Vaccine / Covaxin price cut from ₹600 to ₹400 per dose for states

Zoom News : Apr 29, 2021, 06:41 PM
New Delhi: Bharat Biotech on Thursday announced it will charge state governments ₹400 for a dose of Covaxin, instead of ₹600, as earlier announced. The move comes a day after Pune's Serum Institute of India brought down the price from ₹400 to ₹300 for state governments.

Expressing deep concerns over the present pandemic situation of the country, Bharat Biotech said, "We wish to be transparent in our approach to pricing which was determined by internally funded product development, several operationally intensive BSL-3 manufacturing facilities (the first of its kind on our country) and clinical trials."

"Recognising the enormous challenges to the public health care system, we have made Covaxin available to state governments at a price of ₹400 per dose," the Hyderabad-based company said.

The third phase of vaccination against Covid-19 will begin from May 1 in which people between the age group of 18 and 44 years will be considered eligible to get vaccine doses. As this is an extension of the ongoing vaccination drive of the country, the Centre has allowed state governments and private hospitals to procure vaccines separately from the makers. Following the Centre's order on liberalising the vaccine drive, both Serum Insitute and Bharat Biotech announced the market price of their vaccines Covishield and Covaxin, respectively. While one dose of Covishield was initially priced at ₹400 for states and ₹600 for private hospitals, one dose of Covaxin was initially priced at ₹600 for states and ₹1,200 for private hospitals. The Centre, meanwhile, claimed that it will continue to procure both the vaccines at ₹150 per dose and will dispatch to states as it has been doing so far.

The differential pricing between the Centre and the states became a controversial issue as, like the Centre, several states will administer vaccines for free and thus making the state exchequers bearing the brunt of the procurement of the vaccines.

As several states raised objection to the pricing, the Centre asked both Serum Institute of India and Bharat Biotech to lower their prices.

How will the price reduction impact you?

Many states have announced free vaccination for people between the age groups of 18 and 44 years. People belonging to states which have not announced free vaccination will have to pay less for their vaccine doses in case they get vaccinated from state government facilities.