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Shortage of Anti-Rabies Vaccine

  • 04 Sep 2019
  • 2 min read

Recently, the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) has asked manufacturers and marketers to increase the stocks of anti-rabies vaccine to address its shortage.

  • The shortage is due to lack of firm orders from government and late payments.
  • According to the Health Ministry’s data, India is the hotbed of human rabies.
    • India accounts for more than one-third of the world’s rabies deaths.
    • Each year, as many as 20,000 people die due to the vaccine-preventable fatality.
    • India has a population of 30 million stray dogs which cause 96% of rabies in humans.
  • Rabies
    • It is caused by a Ribonucleic Acid(RNA) virus that is present in the saliva of a rabid animal (dog, cat, monkey, etc).
    • It is invariably transmitted following a bite of a rabid animal that leads to deposition of the saliva and the virus in the wound.
    • The death invariably occurs in four days to two weeks due to cardio-respiratory failure.
    • However, the time interval between the bite and occurrence of symptoms/signs of rabies i.e. incubation period varies from four days to two years or rarely even more.
    • Thus, it is important to remove the virus from the wound as early as possible by immediately washing the wound with water and soap followed by application of antiseptics that reduce/eliminate chances of nerve infection.

National Pharmaceuticals Pricing Authority

  • NPPA is an organization under Department of Pharmaceuticals, Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers which was set up in 1997 to revise the prices of controlled bulk drugs and formulations and to enforce prices and availability of the medicines in the country, under the Drugs (Prices Control) Order (DPCO), 1995.
  • The prices are now fixed/revised under Drugs (Prices Control) Order (DPCO), 2013.
  • It also monitors the prices of decontrolled drugs in order to keep them at reasonable levels.

Source: TH

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