Serum Institute of India (SII) which manufactures the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine has announced its plans to set up manufacturing units outside India to meet the supply commitments.
Adar Poonawala, chief executive officer of SII said, "There is going to be an announcement in the next few days." Poonawalla had previously said that the institute would be able to raise its monthly output to 100 million doses only by July, later than a previous deadline of May-end. Several states in India have run out of vaccines against COVID-19, reported The Times of India.
SII further plans to raise the production capacity from 2.5 billion doses to 3 billion doses a year within the next six months. India has regularly reported more than 300,000 cases a day for the past one week and reached a new peak of 3,86,452 on Friday.
Massive surge is allegedly linked to huge political rallies and resumption of festivals putting tremendous pressure on the Indian medical system and availability of oxygen and other essential life-saving drugs. Indian medical council expects India to reach a peak by 05th May.
The surge has led to a public health crisis and forced the government to seek oxygen, medicines and other essentials from abroadL