The Nepal Health Research Council (NHRC), which conducts clinical trials of plasma therapy treatments and Remdesivir drugs that are seen to be effective for the treatment of the coronavirus, is also planning to test the Chinese vaccine.
A ministerial meeting at the Ministry of Health and Population on Sunday allowed Chinese company Hongxi to move ahead with preliminary work on a vaccine trial. A meeting held at the Ministry of Health on Sunday morning permitted testing of the Chinese vaccine in Nepal.
According to Dr. Gyawali, the company has sought permission to test the third phase of the vaccine on 1,000 Chinese workers at the Hongsi Shivam Cement Industry in Nepal.
The issue of whether or not to include Nepali citizens in the trial has not been decided yet. The Council has been discussing the problem with the Chinese side since Sunday.
British and Russian Coronavirus Vaccine Discussions
The World Health Organization (WHO) has permitted the Council to work with the Oxford Group of the United Kingdom for a vaccine trial in Nepal. The vaccine produced by the Oxford Group is reported to be effective. The third phase of clinical trials of the vaccine is currently underway.
Council Clinical Trial Consultant and Infectious Diseases Specialist Dr. Janak Koirala says that many countries are now looking at the vaccine produced by the Oxford Group. According to him, the vaccine trial has been seen to be effective in many countries and is more reliable than in other countries.
“A doctor who has worked in Nepal is also part of the Oxford Group’s vaccine team. This can be a positive thing for us,” he said. Koirala says, “If the clinical trial of the vaccine is successful, we will get a lot of benefits. The vaccine will also be produced in India.”
The Health Research Council has requested the Oxford Group to provide a vaccine to Nepal for clinical trials. The Council said discussions with the Oxford Group had been positive. However, Nepal has not been included in the list of countries testing the vaccine.
The decision on whether to include Nepal in the list will be taken after a discussion. Gyawali explains. “We are asking for the vaccine to be kept in Nepal for trial,” he said.
The Russian embassy in Nepal has also stated that it is interested in a Russian vaccine trial with the Council. The Council has stated that this issue is also under discussion.
What is the third stage of the clinical trial?
Producing a vaccine for any disease is an economically and scientifically complex task. It takes years of research and billions of dollars. For the same reason, once a vaccine for a disease is discovered, it is tested worldwide to see if it works.
Even if the vaccine is successfully tested in the UK, it is tested to see if it works in Nepal. This is called the third stage of the ‘clinical trial.’
The third phase of the clinical trial involves many citizens from many countries. It compares experimental drugs or vaccines with standard treatments.
Evaluates safety and efficacy and studies the side effects. The third stage of the clinical trial determines whether to approve a new drug or vaccine.
As Nepal cannot produce its own medicine/vaccine, it is necessary to investigate whether the vaccine is effective for Nepal or not. Gyawali explains.
According to Gyawali, there is also a risk in the third phase of testing. However, by the time you reach the third stage, many security steps have been passed.
Former Head of Epidemiology and Disease Control Division Dr. Baburam Marasini says that the medicine or vaccine effective in other countries cannot be considered effective in Nepal without testing.
“We have to test ourselves to see if it is effective for us,” he said.
In the fourth stage of the ‘medical trial,’ after studying the drug’s effectiveness, it is approved, which is accepted by other organizations, including the World Health Organization, after reviewing the results.
How is Clinical Trial Conducted in Nepal?
According to the Health Research Council, approval is sought from the Health Research Council, Department of Drug Management, and related hospitals for conducting clinical trials in Nepal. Before taking the test, the people participating in the test are informed and accepted.
The test has its own directory. Participants in the first trial are insured. If there is any danger during the test, the provision of treatment and compensation is on the list. If there is any effect on the participants in the test, the research team should support them for the rest of their lives.