According to sources familiar with the situation, Zydus Cadila’s Covid vaccine, which is expected to be released next month, will cost more than Covishield but will be similar to those previously authorised. The business and the government are now discussing ZyCoV-D, the world’s first DNA vaccine, and a pricing decision is expected soon, they added.
“The price of the Zydus vaccine will be within the range of already approved vaccines but as the cost of production is higher in DNA vaccines, Zydus may cost a little more than Covishield,” said one of the persons.The Indian drug regulator had on August 20 given emergency use authorisation (EUA) to the three-dose Covid-19 vaccine, the first in India that can be administered to all who are 12 years and above. The government is expected to earmark a major chunk of the Zydus vaccine for children.
The government has been buying Covishield at ₹157.50 and Covaxin at ₹225.75 per dose each.
“Zydus might not get the same kind of volumes like Covishield. Production of DNA vaccines is a complex, time-consuming process,” said one of persons. “All these factors have to be kept in mind while deciding on the price — it will be an affordable vaccine like the existing ones for sure.”
Zydus managing director Sharvil Patel has said that “affordability will be the benchmark to pricing. However, the technology, capacity and volumes will also be the key factors.”