NEW DELHI: Amid growing concerns that kids could be particularly vulnerable to the future waves of the Covid pandemic, the government on Tuesday said that evidence, so far, suggested that children are largely asymptomatic carriers but capable of transmission of the disease.
VK Paul, member, (health), Niti Aayog, and chairman of the national Covid task force said in a briefing by the Ministry of Health that the serosurvey by the ICMR in December-January had shown that children above 10 years and adults, having comparable rates of Covid infection.
He, however, added that whether children could be more vulnerable to Covid in the coming times, depended on the mutations in the virus.
Paul also said that soon, clinical trials to test the safety and efficacy of Covaxin in children aged 2-18 years will start.
“Covaxin has been approved by the Drugs Controller General of India for phase 2/3 clinical trials in the age group of 2 to 18 years. I have been told that trials will begin in the next 10-12 days,” he said.
Covaxin had received the DCGI approval to conduct clinical trials in children last week when the regulator accepted the recommendations by the subject expert committee of the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation, which green lighted the trial under specified conditions.
The clinical trials are expected to be conducted in 525 healthy participants at various hospitals.
AIIMS (New Delhi) director Randeep Guleria had earlier said that it is urgently required to carry out some quick data and risk-benefit analysis of the vaccine's use in children.
Many experts have been urging governments all over the world to inoculate children so schools can be safely re-opened.