China is estimated to reach an annual production capacity of the novel coronavirus vaccine to 610 million doses by the end of 2020, and more than 1 billion by 2021, Zheng Zhongwei, director of the Development Center for Medical Science and Technology of the National Health Commission (NHC), announced at a briefing held by the State Council Information Office of China on Friday.
Zheng detailed that the requirements of the production of the inactivated vaccine are very high, such as high-level production workshops. Therefore, the NHC and relevant government departments have formulated the standards for high-level production workshops, and organized relevant experts and institutions to carry out acceptance inspections on the higher biology workshops built by enterprises, thepaper reported on Friday.
In addition to coronavirus inactivated vaccine, there are also vaccines such as the adenovirus vector and recombinant protein vaccine, Zheng noted, adding that the construction of vaccine production capacity in various technical routes is also advancing at the same time.
As for the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine, Zheng said that vaccination would be carried out successively based on three groups: people who have higher risks of being exposed to coronavirus, those who are more vulnerable to coronavirus, and ordinary people.
Zheng explained that people who have higher risks of being exposed to coronavirus include front-line medical and pandemic prevention personnel, border port staff, and agricultural and sideline products and frozen market workers.
The elderly, pregnant women, children, patients with basic diseases belong to the second category which are more vulnerable to COVID-19, said Zheng.
China has made great progress on researching a coronavirus vaccine. Zeng Guang, a chief scientist and doctoral supervisor at the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday said that Chinese COVID-19 vaccines may be able to protect humans’ immune systems for a relatively long time.
According to Wang Junzhi, an expert from the vaccine development team in China, there has been only minor, acceptable side effects from the first and second phase of COVID-19 vaccine trials, and no antibody dependent enhancement has been found with COVID-19 vaccines.