India today unveiled its indigenously developed and manufactured Rotavirus vaccine, claimed to be the world's cheapest at the rate of around Rs 60 per dose and aimed at boosting efforts to deal with diarrhoea that kills upto 80,000 children under 5 every year.
'Rotavac', launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, isthe third such vaccine available globally against Rotavirus. The Bharat Biotech India Limited, which was involved in the development and production of the vaccine, has given an undertaking to keep the cost of the vaccine at USD 1 (approx Rs 60) per dose, a PMO statement said, adding at the current prices, it will be the cheapest.
The successful launch was the result of an extraordinary effort spread over the last 25 years, it said. Each year, diarrhoea caused by rotavirus results up to 10 lakh hospitalizations and kills nearly 80,000 children under the age of 5 years.
Modi hoped that the development of the rotavirus vaccine would inspire higher levels of research, development and manufacturing activities in India, not just in medical science, but also in other advanced areas of science andtechnology. He felt that solutions found in India would have great relevance to the rest of the world, especially the developing world.
Modi felicitated all the partners in the development of the first indigenous rotavirus vaccine, which involved the complete cycle from basic research to product development of this advanced vaccine in India, a PMO statement said.
He lauded this initiative as an example of India's capabilities for high-end research and development;manufacture of sophisticated pharmaceutical products in India;and effective Public-Private-Partnership model for finding affordable solutions to societal challenges.
He highlighted the vaccine as a successful example of collaboration between India and the United States in the area of medical research, for the benefit of ordinary citizens.