SRM Medical College Hospital and Research Centre (SRM MCHRC), Kattankulathur has successfully completed two phases of human testing of the COVAXIN trial and the third phase for the same will start today (7th December 2020), said SRM MCHRC’s Pro Chancellor (Academics) Dr. P. Sathyanarayanan.
Speaking at a press meet held at the launch of the third phase of the COVAXIN trail in the hospital, he said that the number of patients who will be tested in this final phase will be over 1000.
“Until now we have received 500 volunteers for the test. We will be taking in more volunteers till the end of December 2020. We are trying our best to make this work, as it will be India’s first indigenous vaccine,” he added.
Also present with SRM MCHRC’s Pro Chancellor (Academics) Dr. P. Sathyanarayanan were Pro Vice Chancellor (Medical and Health Sciences) Dr. Lt Col Dr. A. Ravi Kumar, Dean Dr. A. Sundaram, Medical Superintendent Dr. K. Thangaraj, Deputy Medical Superintendent Dr. R. Balamurugan, Director (Communication) Mr. R. Nandakummar and Principal Investigator for COVAXIN Dr. Satyajit Mahopatra along with Dr. Melvin George.
“Any person above 18 years of age and had not suffered COVID19 illness in the past can participate as a volunteer in this trial. Pregnant women are excluded. The vaccine shot will be administered twice – 28 days apart,” said Principal Investigator for COVAXIN, Dr. Satyajit Mahopatra.
The hospital will be able to conduct the trial for 50 people a day. Once the process is successful, the vaccine will be approved on a fast track basis. SRM MCHRC is currently treating 21 COVID 19 patients and on average 80 people are screened for COVID19.
The first phase of human trials at SRM MCHRC began in July 2020 with 30 volunteers. The second phase was done in August in which 45 volunteers participated. In both these phases, the safety of the vaccine was ascertained. In the trial conducted at SRM hospital, none of the volunteers suffered any serious reactions except for mild fever and body ache.
“SRM MCHRC is the only private Medical College Hospital in Tamil Nadu to undertake this trial. The third phase is to assess the efficacy of the Vaccine in inducing immunogenicity in the human volunteer,” said Dr.Lt Col Dr. A. Ravi Kumar, Pro Vice Chancellor (Medical and Health Sciences).
Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR) is collaborating with Bharat Biotech, Hyderabad in the development of COVAXIN. SRM Medical College Hospital and Research Centre is the only private Medical College Hospital in Tamil Nadu to be selected to carry out all three phases of the COVAXIN trial. This vaccine has got the nod for human trials from the Drug Controller General of India.
“SRM MCHRC is well-equipped with various facilities to handle clinical trials such as COVID 19. It provides 24-hours emergency services and has well-qualified doctors and nurses,” said Dr. A. Sundaram, Dean, SRM MCHRC
The hospital has so far treated 1400 COVID patients since April 2020. Both Allopathy and Siddha medicines in combination are used to treat COVID patients. SRM Medical College Hospital and Research Centre has been doing this under the able guidance of Chancellor Dr. T.R. Paarivendhar and Pro Chancellor (Academics) Dr. P. Sathyanarayanan.