Ministry of Health and Family Welfare

Gap between two doses of Covishield Vaccine extended from 6-8 weeks to 12-16 weeks based on recommendation of COVID Working Group

Posted On: 13 MAY 2021 4

The COVID Working Group chaired by Dr N K Arora has recommended extension of the gap between the first and second doses of COVISHIELD vaccine to 12-16 weeks. The present gap between the two doses of COVISHIELD vaccine is 6-8 weeks.

Based on the available real-life evidences, particularly from UK, the COVID-19 Working Group agreed for increasing the dosing interval to 12-16 weeks between two doses of COVISHIELD vaccine. No change in interval of COVAXIN vaccine doses was recommended.

The COVID Working Group comprises of the following members:

1. Dr N K Arora- Director, INCLEN Trust

2. Dr Rakesh Agarwal, Director and dean, JIPMER, Puducherry

3. Dr Gagandeep Kang, professor, Christian Medical College, Vellore

4. Dr J P Mulliyal, Retd professor, Christian Medical College, Vellore

5. Dr Naveen Khanna, Group Leader, International Centre For Genetic Engineering And Biotechnology (ICGEB), JNU, New Delhi

6. Dr Amulya Panda, Director, National Institute of Immunology, New Delhi

7. Dr V G Somani, Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI), Govt of India

The recommendation of the COVID Working Group was accepted by the National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for Covid-19 (NEGVAC), headed by Dr V K Paul, Member (Health) Niti Aayog in its meeting on 12th May 2021.

The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has also accepted this recommendation of the COVID Working Group for extension of the gap between the first and second doses of COVISHIELD vaccine to 12 -16 weeks.

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D.O. Letter to CSs & State Health Secys – Covishield Revised Dose Interval – 13 May 2021

Government of India
Department of Health and Family Welfare
Ministry of Health and Family Welfare

RAJESH BHUSHAN, IAS
SECRETARY

D.0 No. 1940407/2020/Imm
13th May 2021

Dear Colleague

COVID-19 vaccination drive in India has completed 117 days during which we have been able to vaccinate 17.7 crore beneficiaries of which 3.9 crore beneficiaries have completed the two doses schedule of vaccination as per the recommended interval of 4 weeks for Covaxin and 6-8 weeks for Covishield. This has been possible due to the proactive involvement of all States and UTs.

2. In view of the emerging scientific evidences, the interval between two doses of a specified COVID-19 vaccine i.e. COVISHIELD, has been revisited by Covid Working Group of The National Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (NTAGI) and subsequently by National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for COVID-19 (NEGVAC) in its meeting held on 12th May 2021. NEGVAC has recommended revision in schedule of Covishield to administer the 2nd dose at 12-16 weeks interval after 1st dose instead of earlier interval of 6­8 weeks.

3. MoHFW, Government of India has since accepted the recommendation of NTAGI and NEGVAC. Therefore, the States and UTs are advised to ensure 2nd dose of Covishield to beneficiaries within this stipulated time interval of 12-16 weeks after 1st dose.

4. I request you to kindly instruct the concerned officials to undertake necessary steps to widely disseminate the message of revised dosing interval amongst programme managers, vaccinators and recipients of COVISHIELD vaccine and ensure adherence of revised dosing interval. Requisite changes are being carried out in the Co-WIN platform and would be separately communicated to the States/UTs. You are also requested to note that this decision of revised time interval between two doses is applicable only to Covishield and not to Covaxin vaccine.

Yours Sincerely
(Rajesh Bhushan)

Chief Secretary, All States & UTs,

Copy to: Additional Chief Secretary/Principal Secretary/Secretary(Health)
All States & UTs

Gap between two doses of Covishield Vaccine extended to 12-16 weeks

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