National Institute of Health (NIH) has set up a vaccine production plant worth Rs. 751 million that will produce anti-rabies vaccines and anti-venom serums.
The production facility will become operational next month and will help the country overcome the acute shortage of different vaccines.
Last year, numerous incidents of dog bites were reported in Sindh. At least 25 people died in the province due to the absence of anti-rabies vaccines at public healthcare facilities.
Pakistan is expected to become self-sufficient in the production of anti-rabies, anti-venom, anti-tetanus and, anti-diphtheria vaccines. According to NIH, Pakistan’s annual demand for anti-rabies is 50,000 ampules while 90,000 ampules of anti-venom are needed. The annual requirement for anti-tetanus and anti-diphtheria is 30,000 ampules each.
According to Executive Director of NIH, Maj. Gen Dr. Aamer Ikram, Pakistan will not only become self-sufficient in vaccine production for these four afflictions but surplus vaccines will be exported to other countries because of NIH’s ISO certification.