Serum Institute of India (SII) has fixed a price of Rs 600 per dose for Covid-19 vaccine Covishield supplies to private hospitals and Rs 400 per dose to state governments. In a statement posted on its Twitter handle, SII said it will address the limited capacity by scaling up the vaccine production over the next two months.
This comes as India prepares to inoculate everyone above 18 years of age from May 1. At present, people above 45 years of age are eligible to get vaccinated.
As part of the government’s new policy, 50 per cent of the vaccine doses will be reserved for the centre and the rest will be divided between states and private hospitals.
“Going ahead, 50 per cent of our capacities will be served to the Government of India’s vaccination programme, and the remaining 50 per cent of the capacity will be for the state governments and private hospitals,” it said.
Serum said its vaccines will still be more affordable than foreign jabs, which cost anywhere from Rs 750 to Rs 1,500 a shot.
Meanwhile, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has said that the Covid-19 vaccine Covaxin, made by Bharat Biotech, neutralises multiple variants of SARS-CoV-2 and effectively neutralises the double mutant strain as well.
“ICMR study shows #COVAXIN neutralises against multiple variants of SARS-CoV-2 and effectively neutralises the double mutant strain as well,” the ICMR tweeted.
ICMR-NIV has demonstrated the neutralisation potential of Covaxin against the UK variant and Brazil variant, the apex health research body said.
This development comes amid the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic being witnessed across the country.
The single-day rise in new coronavirus infections inched closer to 3 lakh today pushing India’s total Covid-19 tally to 1,56,16,130, while the death toll increased to 1,82,553 with a record 2,023 daily fatalities. The active cases crossed the 21-lakh mark according to the Union Health Ministry data updated at 8 am today
The central government has recently approved a payment of about ₹4,500 crore as advance to vaccine makers like Serum Institute of India (SII) and Bharat Biotech to boost production capacity.