Coronavirus vaccine: Will central govt have Rs 80000 crore to vaccinate every Indian over next year, asks Serum Chief

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Updated: September 26, 2020 7:03 PM

Quoting the amount of Rs 80000 crore, the Serum Institute's chief said the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare would need to spend as much money to buy and distribute Covid-19 vaccine to everyone in the country.

Even as the race for getting an effective Coronavirus vaccine is on, Serum Institute of India (SII) chairman Adar Poonawalla has asked whether the Government in India would be able to garner Rs 80000 crore over the next one year to provide Coronavirus vaccine to every individual in the country. Taking to Twitter, Poonawalla said getting the financial resources to buy and distribute the Coronavirus vaccine to every individual would be the next big challenge of the pandemic.

Quoting the amount of Rs 80000 crore, the Serum Institute’s chief said the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare would need to spend as much money to buy and distribute Covid-19 vaccine to everyone in the country.

Explaining the need to ask questions on the financial cost of Coronavirus vaccine, Poonawalla said that he was asking the question because sound planning would guide domestic as well as international vaccine manufacturers better in terms of procurement and distribution in the country.

Serum Institute of India is presently involved in the manufacturing and human trials of the Coronavirus vaccine candidate developed by the University of Oxford and AstraZeneca. Presently, the human trials of the vaccine are undergoing the third and final phase.

Ever since the human trials of several Coronavirus vaccines started, concerns over vaccinating huge populations among developing and poor economies have been a concern. A mass vaccination program to ensure the supply of coronavirus vaccines to the developing and poor nations is also being run by various multilateral institutions such as the World Health Organisation (WHO), the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, among others. The concerns have also been raised over the moves  by several rich nations led by the United States of America and other European nations to corner the first batch of vaccine doses for their own population at the cost of poor nations.

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