New Delhi, Jan 14:
Even as the country gears up for COVID-19 vaccination drive on Saturday, 1.65 crore doses of “Covishield” and Covaxin vaccines have been allocated to all states/UTs in the proportion of health care workers database, Union Health Ministry stated on Thursday.
There is no question of discrimination against any state in allocation of vaccination doses. This is the initial lot of supply of vaccine doses and would be continuously replenished in the weeks to come. Therefore, any apprehension being expressed on account of deficient supply is totally baseless and unfounded, the ministry stated.
States have been advised to organize vaccination sessions taking into account 10% reserve/wastage doses and average of 100 vaccinations per session per day. Therefore, any undue haste on the parts of the States to organize unreasonable numbers of vaccination per site per day is not advised. The States and UTs have also been advised to increase the number of vaccination session sites that would be operational every day in a progressive manner as the vaccination process stabilizes and moves forward.
Out of 165 lakh dosages, the Pune based Serum Institute if India (SII) has supplied 110 lakh dosages, while Hyderabad based Bharat Biotech is providing 55 lakh dosages. Out of these 55 lakh dosages, the company has agreed to supply 16.5 lakh dosages free of cost to the Government. Thus even though Bharat Biotech has priced its dose at Rs 295 per dose, its eventual cost comes to Rs 206 per dose. As against this SII has priced its dose at Rs 200 per dose.
The allocation of “Covishield”/”Covaxin” dosages includes: Kerala- 4,33,500 dosages of “Covishield”(SII), Andhra Pradesh-4,97,000 dosages of “Covaxin”(BB), Telangana-3.64 lakh dosages of “Covishield”(SII), Maharashtra-: 9.63 lakh dosages of “Covishield”(SII), Gujarat- eight to ten lakh dosages of “Covishield”, Madhya Pradesh-5.06 lakh dosages, Rajasthan-2 lakh dosages and Goa-2.30 lakh 10 doses.
In the meanwhile the Government has asked Pfizer Inc, to conduct a local “bridging” safety and immunogenicity study to be considered for the country’s immunisation programme, a senior government said. The SII, manufacturer of the vaccine developed by AstraZeneca Plc and Oxford University, has done a similar study on more than 1,500 people over months before seeking and receiving emergency approval in the country.
Bharat Biotech to export “Covaxin” to Brazil
In another development Bharat Biotech has signed an agreement with “Precisa Medicamentos” of Brazil for supply of ‘Covaxin”. The Bharat Biotech made this announcement on 12 January 2021. The agreement was signed after discussion with a team from “Precisa Medicamentos” which visited the Bharat Biotech facility in Genome Valley, Hyderabad and discussed export possibilities of “Covaxin”, India’s first indigenous vaccine for COVID-19, with Bharat Biotech CMD Dr. Krishna Ella on the 7th and 8th of January 2021.