NEW DELHI: To ensure vaccine security in the country, the Centre on Friday gave its final approval for setting up a vaccine manufacturing unit- Integrated Vaccine Complex (IVC) in an 100 acre of land at Chengalpattu, near Chennai.
The IVC will be a state-of-the-art facility for production of vaccines for the national immunization programme and other new generation vaccines including the recently introduced pentavalent vaccine. The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has asked Hindustan Latex Limited (HLL) to prepare the plan to develop the IVC. The IVC will be a subsidiary of HLL. The IVC, with an investment of `594 crore, will be operational in 36 months, a senior official in the Ministry said.
The manufacturing facility will comply with World Health Organisation (WHO) - Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) standards, to make safe and effective vaccines available at affordable prices. The IVC will house research and development laboratories as well as testing, standardisation and validation centres.
Sources said that the Ministry would soon unveil the National Vaccine Policy. “All the three public sector vaccine manufacturing units, which were closed in 2008, are being revived and will be manufacturing vaccines in a phased manner in another few months,” added the official. BCG Laboratory (Chennai), Central Research Institute (Kasauli) and Pasteur Institute of India (Conoor) were closed in 2008 for not complying with WHO’s GMP standards.