The Serum Institute of India has announced the prices of its Covid-19 vaccine COVISHIELD for State governments and private hospitals for the next phase of the vaccination drive nationwide starting from 1st May. The price for the state government is pegged at Rs 400 per dose, while for the private hospitals, it is Rs 600 per dose.
The company made the declaration as the government of India’s directive opening up the vaccination program. While allowing 50% of the vaccines to be supplied to state governments and private hospitals, the order by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare had said that manufacturers would transparently make an advance declaration of the price for 50% supply that would be available to state govts. and in open market, before 1st May 2021.
A statement was released by the Serum Institute of India earlier today in which it made the announcement of providing its vaccines to the state governments and private hospitals in the wake of the broad guidelines issued by the central government for the procurement of vaccines.
IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT pic.twitter.com/bTsMs8AKth— SerumInstituteIndia (@SerumInstIndia) April 21, 2021
“For the next two months, we will address the limited capacity by scaling up the vaccine production. Going ahead, 50 per cent of our capacities will be served to the Government of India’s vaccination program, and the remaining 50% of the capacity will be for the State governments and private hospitals,” the statement released by the Serum Institute of India said.
The SII also said that the prices of its COVID-19 vaccine Covishield are affordable as compared to the global COVID-19 vaccines like the American vaccines that charge above Rs 1500 per dose, Russian vaccines and Chinese vaccines that cost upwards of Rs 750 per dose.
The SII has also urged corporate entities and private individuals to access the vaccines through the state facilitated machinery and private health system, owing to the complexity, urgency of the situation and the challenges in supplying it independently to everyone.
As the company has announced the price for Covishield, state govts and private hospitals will set their price to be charged from people getting the vaccine based on these prices. It may be noted that some state like Assam and UP have already announced that they will vaccinate people for free. Private hospitals may add costs of logistics like transportation, storage and cost of consumables like syringes etc to arrive at the final retail price.
Government of India announced Phase 3 of the COVID-19 vaccination drive
On April 19, the Government of India announced the Phase 3 Strategy of Covid-19 vaccination. As per the government’s press release, every citizen of India above the age of 18 will be eligible for the vaccine through ‘other than the Government of India channel’ that includes state government and private vaccination providers. During the meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, several important decisions were taken related to pricing, procurement, eligibility and administration of the vaccine.
The Centre on Monday announced a slew of changes in the vaccination policies and made provisions for states to purchase the vaccines directly from manufacturers. The Union Govt allowed vaccine manufacturers to sell 50% of their output in open market to states and other private players.