South Africa to get Serum-made 1.5 mn COVID-19 vaccines from India

Johannesburg: South Africa will receive one million COVID-19 vaccines from the Pune-based Serum Institute of India in January, followed by an additional 500,000 doses in February, the Health minister told Parliament on Thursday, amid a spike in coronavirus deaths and infections in the country.

Drug major AstraZeneca has partnered with the Serum Institute of India (SII), the world's largest vaccine manufacturer, for the supply of the vaccine to the Indian government and also to a large number of low and middle-income countries.

The vaccine, developed with the University of Oxford, is made from a virus which is a weakened version of a common cold virus (adenovirus), that has been genetically changed so that it is impossible for it to grow in humans.