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Health Minister: Iran to Turn into Coronavirus Vaccine-Production Hub in Near Future

Iranian Health Minister Saeed Namaki said on Sunday that the country’s home-made coronavirus vaccines are passing necessary tests successfully, adding that Iran will turn into a center for the production of the vaccine soon.

“Fortunately, the Iranian scientists are making round-the-clock efforts to make our national vaccine, and in the near future, we will be one of the most important centers for making Covid-19 vaccine in the world,” Namaki said.

He, meantime, assured the Iranian people that the government has provided the needed resources to import vaccine from foreign companies, adding that the first batch of coronavirus vaccine will enter the country in the coming days and will be injected to vulnerable groups.

Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani said on Saturday that 3 home-made coronavirus vaccines produced by the country’s scientists will be mass-produced and injected to millions of Iranian nationals late in Spring or early Summer.

“We can almost say that next year, at the beginning of Summer or the end of Spring, we will have three vaccines (developed by the three institutes of) Barekat, Razi and Pasteur,” President Rouhani said, addressing a meeting of the national coronavirus campaign headquarters in Tehran on Saturday.

“We will have these three domestic vaccines next (Iranian) year (which starts on March 20, 2021) and we hope to have some of them in the Spring and some in Summer, and from now until the end of the year, except for COVAX, which we will have our share of, we will import more than 16 million doses of vaccines,” he added.

Rouhani assured the nation that efforts are being made to start vaccination in the country in February, saying, “This is very important.”

He also stressed the necessity for meeting all protocols to prevent the spread of Britain-originated and South Africa-originated coronavirus vaccines.

Iranian Deputy Health Minister Iraj Harirchi had on Thursday said that the country’s home-made coronavirus vaccines develop immunity against the new British virus too.

The home-made COVID-19 vaccines enjoy “satisfactory quality”, Harirchi said.

The vaccines are also effective against the British coronavirus, he said, adding that if the virus reveals new aspects, fresh research will be carried out.  

Harirchi underlined that the Iranian private companies have achieved good success in manufacturing the COVID-19 vaccines.

Head of Iran’s Headquarters for Executing the Order of Imam (EIKO) Mohammad Mokhber said on Tuesday that the volunteers who have received the country’s home-made coronavirus vaccine in the human trial phase have shown no side-effect yet.

Addressing a ceremony to unveil a number of home-made medicine produced by Barekat Foundation, Mokhber said that several people across the world have died after injection of the coronavirus vaccines produced by foreign companies.

“This is while the Iranian vaccine already tested on 14 volunteers has produced no side-effects until this moment,” he said.

“Given the laboratory research on this type of vaccine and the positive assessments of scientific aspects, the country will no doubt mass-produce the vaccine and we will grow self-sufficient in this regard,” Mokhber said.

He had earlier on Tuesday said that that the country will mass-produce its domestically developed coronavirus vaccine within the next 3 months, declaring the start of the third phase of testing the home-made vaccine on volunteers.

Also, last Monday, Head of Pasteur Institute of Iran Alireza Biglari said that the country’s home-made vaccines will be ready for the nation’s vaccination late in spring if they pass all tests successfully.

“The Health Ministry is trying to provide the necessary vaccines from foreign sources for priority groups; also, really good efforts are being made to produce domestically-produced vaccines and co-produce them with other countries,” Biglari said.

“But regarding the domestically-produced vaccines, the most optimistic case is that we can have the domestically-produced vaccines for public vaccination in June if all plans succeed,” he added.

Biglari explained that Iran’s vaccine produced jointly with foreign states will go for extensive human trial phase in March, while public vaccination could start in June.

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