The Sputnik V Covid vaccine from Russia will be sold for $ 10 (about Rs 750) a dose in India, its Indian manufacturer, Dr Reddy’s Labs, has told NDTV. Hundreds of thousands of doses will be available in the country in May-June through imports, said GV Prasad, Managing Director of Dr Reddy’s.
Sputnik V is the third vaccine to be cleared for use in India at a time when the country’s demand is expected to shoot up after the vaccinations have been opened to all adults from May 1.
When asked how many doses would be available by May-June, Mr Prasad said: “Hundreds of thousands are still under discussion, in my opinion hundreds of thousands.”
In terms of prices and different caps, he revealed that the upper limit would be 10 dollars, the global price.
“Firstly, the imported product would only be for the private market, it is entirely allowed for the private market. Our partner wants to price it globally at a similar level. The price worldwide is $ 10 and I hope that will be the ceiling in. So, first we start with that, once we start manufacturing, we will have to start exporting some of it and giving it to the public markets in India and that pricing model that we will have to figure out in the coming weeks. ceiling at $ 10 should be little less than that. That product will be available for the public market and private, ”he said.
Dr Reddy’s will increase vaccine manufacture in India after initial imports.
“The cost of Sputnik V may be slightly lower when production starts in India,” Mr Prasad said.
“After the imported vaccine is exhausted and by the time the Indian thing comes, we probably have … not a single price for the whole of India, the private market will be a premium market.”
Sputnik is expected to be the most expensive shot to date in India.
Serum has said that Covishield – developed by Oxford-Astrazeneca – will be sold at Rs 400 a shot to state governments and Rs 600 to private hospitals. The center will continue to receive Covishield doses at Rs 150 each.
Can Sputnik V protect against the new mutant strains in India?
“I have very early-stage data, and it’s not good for me to say anything on that, but every vaccine seems to have some effectiveness on the mutants. And the important thing is even if it is The mutant is there, and you are vaccinated the symptoms are relatively mild so it is important to be vaccinated. I think, like seasonal flu, we will see booster shots after “tailor made for mutants every season. Ultimately, I think the pattern will set in but at this point it’s a little too early to speculate on that,” Mr Prasad said.
Sputnik V will be shipped at -18 degrees Celsius using the existing cold chain for measles vaccine, he added.
The vaccine can be stored in two forms. In the liquid form, -18 degrees is required but in the powdered form, temperature storage of 2-8 degrees Celsius is required, which means it can be stored in the fridge on average.
“The current recommended temperature is -18 degrees to -214 degrees. We have a measles vaccine supply chain historically in India that is at -20. We’re going to leverage that and we’ve also added some of that with cold storage points on various parts of the country nationwide, “Mr Prasad told NDTV.
Sputnik V is the only Covid shot other than those of Pfizer and Moderna to show over 91 percent effectiveness against Covid-19 when taken in two doses, 21 days apart.