Government rules out the option of choosing between vaccines
The individuals will not be able to choose the vaccine they prefer, given the logistical limitations and availability of the vaccine.
The Health Secretary, Rajesh Bhushan informed on January 12, 2021, that the individuals will not be able to choose the vaccine they prefer, given the logistical limitations and availability of the vaccine.
The central government has so far ordered 110 lakh doses from Serum Institute of India and 55 lakh doses from Bharat Biotech. The vaccines will reach various centres by January 14 as India will start the nationwide vaccination drive on January 16, 2021.
The Health Secretary also informed that the countrywide vaccination rollout is expected to last beyond one year and in the start, the vaccination will be sequential. He also added that in no country there is an option regarding the choice of vaccines.
Made in India vaccines:
Dr. Vinod Paul from Niti Aayog stated that both the vaccines in India are affordable because they are ‘Made in India’. He added that both COVAXIN and Covishield are the safest of the vaccines and that their side effects are negligible. If they are to be compared with other vaccines, there is no risk of significance:
• Bharat Biotech, out of the total number of doses, will be providing 16.5 lakh doses of COVAXIN free of cost to the Indian government.
• It has been expected that COVAXIN is more likely to act against the mutant strain. It was also the major consideration for pricing it higher than Covishield.
• Bharat Biotech has already dispatched the first tranche of 2.4 lakh doses on January 12, 2021, to 12 places which include, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Odisha, Assam, Bihar, Delhi, Lucknow, Haryana, and Jaipur.
Prices of COVID-19 vaccines
• The Serum Institute of India will provide its vaccine at the price of Rs. 200 while COVAXIN by Bharat Biotech will cost Rs. 295 per dose excluding taxes.
• The cost of Pfizer’s vaccine is Rs. 2,800 for two doses.
• The cost of Moderna will be between Rs. 2,300 to Rs. 2,700 per dose.
• The vaccine that has been developed by China will cost Rs. 5,600 per dose. While another Chinese vaccine that will be made available in India will cost Rs. 1,200 per dose.