Two Indian vaccine candidates who have received the mass vaccination node of the Drug Controller General of India are ready with the cheapest virus vaccines in the world against Covid-19 that have already taken over 1.5 lakh lives and infected more than one crore people in India.
Cheapest Covid vaccines in the world
In contrast with Pfizer-BioNtech and Moderna vaccine, the two Indian vaccine candidates – Covishield’s by Serum Institute and Covaxin by Bharat Biotech – have been priced very low.
For each shot, the Covishield vaccine is likely to be priced at about Rs 200 to Rs 250, according to the Serum Institute of India. This is the probable price at which this vaccine will be procured from the Serum Institute by the Indian government.
Although the pricing of their vaccine has not yet been officially disclosed by Bharat Biotech, company sources have reported that it will be available at a reasonable price and is likely to be lower than the price at which Covishield will be available.
Both Covishield and Covaxin vaccines are two-dose vaccines and should be administered at different intervals.
The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, which is currently commonly used in various parts of the world is priced at $19 per injection, compared to this, and the Moderna vaccine was priced anywhere between $32 and $37 per shot, making it one of the most costly vaccines.
These two vaccines are two-dose vaccines that need to be given at different intervals.
The problems with the Pfizer vaccine are also very high, as a very strict cold chain quality is required for this vaccine. The Pfizer vaccine needs to be stored at all times between minus 70 to minus 80 degrees Celsius and such demanding cold chain management is almost impossible for a country like India, according to health experts, and thus this vaccine is not a realistic choice for India.
In comparison to other vaccines, Indian vaccines-Covishield and Covaxin, are much easier to store and transport across a wide country like India, as their cold chain requirements are as common as other vaccinations in India.
These vaccines require the maintenance of a cold chain between 2 and 8 degrees Celsius. This is the temperature that is needed for the storage and transport of any form of the vaccine in India and is therefore considered to be the ideal candidate for India, provided that the country already has arrangements for logistical support for such a cold chain.
The Covishield vaccine, jointly developed by Oxford and AstraZeneca, is manufactured by the Serum Institute of India in Pune. Serum Institute has also said that 50 to 60 million doses of the vaccine are ready to be developed each month.
I am delighted to hear that, Covishield, a low-cost, logistically manageable & soon to be widely available, #COVID19 vaccine, will offer protection up to 90% in one type of dosage regime and 62% in the other dosage regime. Further details on this, will be provided this evening. https://t.co/KCr3GmROiW
— Adar Poonawalla (@adarpoonawalla) November 23, 2020
The Covishield vaccine is manufactured in a weakened form using the virus, Adenovirus, which causes common cold infections among chimpanzees and has the same genetic material present in the Covid-19 virus spike protein. This vaccine is found to be 90 percent effective when one-and-a-half doses are given.
Indigenous Covaxin by Bharat Biotech, India, has used a “dead” virus known in medical terms as an “inactivated” vaccine that will be injected into the human body, tricking the human immune response system into activating its immune response to the virus and thereby producing sufficient antibodies to the virus in the body.
However, the “inactivated” virus does not have the potential to reproduce itself in the human body and is thus healthy and likely to have no harmful effects on the human body.