On Friday, the Serum Institute of India said that at least 100 million vaccine doses out of its total production would be made available at a price as much as Rs 240 for each dose.
With multiple vaccine candidates showing promising results in the initial phases of clinical trials, the arrival of Covid19 vaccine is certain if not this year then by early next year, according to most health experts. However, even after a vaccine has been approved for use on mass scale, its availability and affordability for countries-rich and poor alike- would be the next important area of discussion. On Friday, the Serum Institute of India said that at least 100 million vaccine doses out of its total production would be made available at a price as much as Rs 240 for each dose, according to an Indian Express report. The company also said that this would be enabled due to the funding of $150 million it has received from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to accelerate the production of the vaccine.
The company which is the largest vaccine manufacturer of the world has already signed deals with two of the leading Covid-19 vaccine candidates-Oxford University-AstraZeneca and Novavax- to develop, manufacture and sell the vaccine in India along with some other developing nations.
Among the other leading vaccine candidates American pharma company Moderna has said that it intends to sell a dose of its vaccine at a cost between Rs 3,700 and Rs 4,500, while the vaccine developed by Pfizer is expected to cost around Rs 3,000 for a dose. Earlier, the Serum Institute had also kept the price of a single dose of the Oxford University- AstraZeneca vaccine at around Rs 1,000 per dose. However, the prices presently being quoted by leading pharma companies are going to see huge fluctuation among different countries and even within the same country among different groups of people. For instance, the Modernica vaccine which has been estimated to cost Rs 3,700-Rs 4,500 in the U.S is expected to be cheaper in other countries, according to the Indian Express report. Many pharma companies including AstraZeneca, Johnson and Johnson and Pfizer have also indicated that they have no intention to benefit the sale of the vaccine.