Nov 16 (Reuters) – Two billion doses of the AstraZeneca-Oxford University COVID-19 vaccine have been delivered worldwide, the Anglo-Swedish drugmaker and its partner said Tuesday, in just under a year since its first approval.
The injection, which is the largest contributor to the World Health Organization-backed COVAX vaccination program, is being made in 15 countries for delivery to more than 170 countries, London-based AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford said in a joint statement.
AstraZeneca (AZN.L) signed in June last year with the Indian Serum Institute, the world’s largest manufacturer of vaccines by volume, to help double the vaccine’s production capacity to two billion doses.
The ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 shot, sold under the brand names Vaxzevria and Covishield, has faced challenges in efficacy data, supplies and links to rare blood clots.
AstraZeneca said last week that if the world learns to live with the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, it would start making a modest profit from the injection after committing to sell it at cost during the pandemic. read more
However, the company’s chief executive officer, Pascal Soriot, assured that low-income countries would continue to receive nonprofit vaccines.
Reporting by Sinchita Mitra and Pushkala Aripaka in Bengaluru; Editing by Vinay Dwivedi
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