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Interview on Myancopharm—the first-ever Myanmar product against COVID-19

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An opening speech by SAC Secretary Lt-Gen Aung Lin Dwe.

The State Administration Council Chairman Prime Minister Senior General Min Aung Hlaing gave instructions to the Ministry of Industry, the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Defence to work together to produce COVID-19 vaccines locally and conduct researches by drafting the short and long plans during his visit to the Pharmaceutical Factory Branch (Ywathagyi) on 8 October 2021. According to the directive, officials made efforts and produced the vaccine and conducted the launch ceremony of the Myancopharm vaccine on 23 March 2022. Only four countries could carry out Full-Finish of Sinopharm vaccines in the world and five ASEAN countries, including Myanmar, also produced the vaccine and so the production of the Myancopharm vaccine in collaboration of three ministries made a new chapter in the history and a golden day for the Myanma medicinal field.
The Myancopharm vaccine production can discover the production processes and reduce the use of foreign currency in buying the vaccines. It can also show the China-Myanmar unique relationship, Pauk-Phaw friendship. The vaccine was produced with 12 detailed procedures at the Pharmaceutical Factory Branch (Ywathagyi) under the Pharmaceutical Factory (Insein).
Here are the some heartful words of the Pharmaceutical Factory Branch (Ywathagyi) staff;

Daw Ei Ei Win
(Production Department-In Charge)
The experts of Sinopharm China National Biotec Group came to the Pharmaceutical Factory Branch (Ywathagyi) to examine whether we have proper condition to produce the vaccines. When we were perfect, the Media Fill completed after three March and we conducted the necessary operations and so we could produce the vaccines in March. Our department buys the Ready to Fill Bulk to produce the vaccines.
We continued the Ready to Fill Bulk operations using the mixed vaccines from the Chinese Sinopharm CNBG. First of all, we have to clean the materials with Ultrasonic Machine. Then, we conduct Depyrodenacion at 310 degrees centigrade. After we reduce the temperature for vial, we fill the vaccines in it. The Quality Assurance Department inspects the whole in-process. We cover the vials with Rubber Stopper, Aluminium Cap and check them with Inspection Machine. After the check whether the vials contain small particles, we send them to Quality Assurance Department. Only the ones that pass the department, we stick seals and make packaging process. All the vaccines are kept at 2-8 degree centigrade.
One vial can offer 5 doses. We will manufacture 1 million doses of vaccine per month, targeting 10 million doses for the 2022-2023FY. We will follow the Program of the Ministry of Health as there are still people who have not received vaccines and who have to get Booster Dose. All the staff are glad for the ability to produce the vaccines as the people need them. The Sinopharm experts make successive inspection in the production processes and the production starts only when we pass these inspection levels. In producing the vaccines, we check them sending to FDA under the Ministry of Health and not just only to the Ministry of Industry. We thank the Sinopharm experts and those who involved in processes and the officials of ministry concerned as they provided us the needed assistance.
Daw Nyein Nyein
(Quality Assurance Department -In Charge)
The Quality Assurance Department and Quality Control Department have to conduct Environmental Monitoring in the whole Process Control. These two departments have to check the cleanliness in the production room. If there are proper results, we continue the filling processes.
The Quality Control Department check the Efficacy, Purity, Safety and Quality on the vaccines produced by the production department. Then, the QA department submits the vaccine quality documents to FDA. Since we receive the Ready to Fill (RTF) Bulk, we record the Cold Change Temperature and the Temperature of Cold Room daily.
We energize the collective strength of the ministries, staff and the supports of leaders under the instructions of Prime Minister in vaccine production. As the Sinopharm experts also prioritized the purity and safety, we all are satisfied with the vaccine productions for the people.
We measure the temperature of vaccine three times a week and check them daily. The term of vaccine is one year. I have been working here for nearly 30 years and my participation in vaccine production under the guidance of Prime Minister is such as proudful action. I am happy for achieving Myancopharm vaccines for all people.
The vaccine was launched on 10 March 2022 and the purchased RTF Bulk (1,220 litres) will arrive by the end of April. The term of vaccine is one year and it is estimated to produce 10 million doses of vaccines in the 2022-2023FY. The Myancopharm vaccine will support the education sector of the country as no one knows when the pandemic will end. Such achievement will brighten the country than before and open a new chapter in the history of ministry concerned and Myanma medicinal field. – NyaungU Phee, Photos: Oaktha/GNLM

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