Staff Reporter : The phase-3 trial of Covid-19 vaccine, developed by China's Sinovac, became uncertain in Bangladesh after Chinese government proposed for co-funding of the trial. The trial was supposed to begin in September but the latest development caused a delay, said the authorities. 'China has proposed co-funding for the trial which delays the beginning of the trial,' health secretary Abdul Mannan told the media. 'We are considering the proposal but could not tell about possible date for reaching a decision,' he said. The Bangladesh Medical Research Council on July 19 has approved the phase-3 trial of the Covid-19 vaccine developed by Sinovac. International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh partnered with Sinovac and seven hospitals in Bangladesh were selected for the trial on 4,200 volunteers. Sinovac initiated the development of an inactivated vaccine against Covid-19 named CoronaVac in January and got the approval to conduct the phase-1 and phase-2 clinical trials in China that began in April. The phase-3 clinical trial to test the efficacy and safety of the vaccine has already been approved by a number of countries, including Brazil, one of the worst coronavirus-hit countries. Bangladesh confirmed its first Covid-19 cases on March 8. The country so far tallied 3.63 lakh cases with 5,251 deaths. The National Technical Advisory Committee on Covid-19 suggested the government to allow trial of Covid-19 vaccines as it would enable Bangladesh to access the vaccines early. Health minister Zahid Maleque on Sunday said that the government allocated Tk 100 million fund for Covid-19 vaccines, but it was not clear if the government would co-fund the trial. A number of firms, including from Europe and India, proposed Bangladesh for the trial of their Covid-19 vaccines.
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