However, the government is negotiating a price cut and a final decision on this is expected to be made this week, sources familiar with developments said.
The government said Thursday that the world’s first needleless Covid-19 vaccine developed locally by Zydus Cadila would soon be introduced into the national coronavirus vaccination campaign.
“The company offered a price of Rs 1,900 including tax for its three-dose jab.
“Negotiations are ongoing. The company has been asked to reconsider all aspects regarding the cost of the vaccine. A final decision on the price of the vaccine is expected to be made this week,” a source said.
Another source said that ZyCoV-D must be priced differently than Covaxin and Covishield because, in addition to being a three-dose vaccine, there is a needleless jet injector used to deliver the vaccine which costs Rs 30,000.
This jet injector can be used to deliver approximately 20,000 doses.
The vaccine should be administered on days zero, 28 and 56.
According to sources, around three rounds of meetings have taken place between the Center and the company so far, the last Thursday.
Meanwhile, the ministry is also awaiting recommendations from the National Immunization Technical Advisory Group (NTAGI) to introduce ZyCoV-D into the vaccination campaign and prioritize beneficiaries by focusing on people aged 12-18. with comorbidities.
NTAGI will provide the protocol and framework for the introduction of this vaccine into the Covid-19 vaccination campaign, an official source said.
Regarding the price of the vaccine at which it will be purchased, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan, at a press conference on Thursday, said the government was in conversation with the manufacturers.
“As this is a three-dose vaccine and comes with a needleless delivery system, it would be priced different from existing vaccines that are used in the Covid vaccination program,” said he declared.
The ZyCoV-D vaccine received authorization for emergency use from the drug‘s regulator on August 20, making it the first vaccine to be given to the 12-18 year old group in addition to adults.
Covishield, Covaxin, and Sputnik V vaccines are only given to people over 18 years of age and unlike ZyCoV-D, they are two-dose vaccines.