Adar Poonawalla thanks govt for Rs 35,000 crore Covid immnisation fund
New Delhi, Feb 01: Serum Institute's Adar Poonawalla have hailed the Budget 2021 announcments and also government's decision to earmark Rs 35,000 crore for the Covid-19 vaccination drive.
Adar Poonawalla, CEO, Serum Institute of India on Twitter wrote,''Great #Budget2021 announcements, @nsitharaman Ji, especially on healthcare and vaccines; this is the best investment any country can make. A healthier India is a more productive India.''
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman provided Rs 35,000 crore towards COVID-19 vaccination in 2021-22 fiscal.
"I have provided Rs 35,000 crore for COVID-19 vaccine in this year 2021-22. I''m committed to provide further funds if required. The Budget outlay for health and well being is Rs 2.23 lakh crore in 2021-22 as against BE of Rs 94,452 crore and marks an increase of 137 per cent," she said while presenting 2021-22 Budget in the Lok Sabha.
India had earlier in January approved two vaccines -- Oxford''s Covishield manufactured by SII and Bharat Biotech''s Covaxin -- for restricted emergency use. The country launched its COVID-19 vaccination drive from January 16 in what Prime Minister Narendra Modi has called the world''s largest inoculation programme with priority to be given to nearly three crore healthcare and frontline workers.
According to the COVID-19 Vaccine Operational Guidelines, the shots will be offered first to an estimated one crore healthcare workers, and around two crore frontline workers, and then to persons above 50 years of age, followed by persons younger than 50 years of age with associated comorbidities based on evolving pandemic situation.