Drug firm Dr Reddy’s Laboratories on Friday said it has launched COVID vaccine Sputnik V in the Indian market with the first dose being administered in Hyderabad, as part of a limited pilot.
The company said the imported doses of the vaccine are presently priced at a maximum retail price of Rs 948, with 5 percent GST per dose, amounting to Rs 995.4 per dose.
“The imported doses of the vaccine are presently priced at an MRP of Rs 948 + 5 percent GST per dose, with the possibility of a lower price point when local supply begins,” Dr Reddy’s Laboratories said in a statement.
The first consignment of imported doses of the Sputnik V vaccine landed in India on May 1, and received regulatory clearance from the Central Drugs Laboratory, Kasauli, on May 13, 2021, it added.
As part of a limited pilot, the soft launch of the vaccine has commenced and the first dose of the vaccine was administered in Hyderabad, Dr Reddy’s said.
“Further consignments of imported doses are expected over the upcoming months. Subsequently, supply of the Sputnik V vaccine will commence from Indian manufacturing partners,” it added.
The company is working closely with its six manufacturing partners in India to fulfill regulatory requirements to ensure smooth and timely supply, Dr Reddy’s said.
The Hyderabad-based firm said that it will work closely with stakeholders in the government and private sector in India to ensure the widest possible reach of the Sputnik V vaccine, as part of the national inoculation effort.
“With rising cases in India, vaccination is our most effective tool in our battle against COVID-19. Contributing to the vaccination drive in India is our biggest priority right now to help Indians be healthy and safe,” Dr Reddy’s Co-Chairman and MD G V Prasad said.
Till now, only two vaccines were being administered in India for COVID-19 — Covaxin manufactured by Bharat Biotech and Covishield manufactured by Serum Institute of India.
On Thursday, the Centre said that over two billion doses of vaccines will be made available in the country in five months between August and December, enough to vaccinate the entire population.
V K Paul, Member (Health), Niti Aayog at a Health Ministry briefing, said that the estimated 216 crore doses that are likely to be produced between August and December include 75 crore doses of Covishield and 55 core doses of Covaxin.
Further, Biological E is expected to produce 30 crore doses, Zydus Cadila 5 crore, Serum Institute of India 20 crore doses of Novavax, and Bharat Biotech 10 crore doses of its nasal vaccine, while Gennova will make available 6 crore doses and Sputnik V 15.6 crore doses, he had said.
Dr Reddy’s had received permission from the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) to import the Sputnik vaccine into India for restricted use in emergency situations in April.
The company had partnered with the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) to conduct the clinical trials of Sputnik V and distribute the vaccine in India in September 2020.
Sputnik V uses two different vectors for the two shots in a course of vaccination.
Its efficacy was determined to be 91.6 percent as per a published article in the medical journal Lancet.