Pune: The national rollout of Zydus Cadila’s Covid vaccine, ZyCoV-D will take two more weeks.
“Different batches of ZyCoV-D are undergoing a final round of quality checks at the vaccine testing laboratory in Himachal Pradesh. If everything goes as per plan, the vaccine will be introduced in the immunisation programme by October 15-20,” chairman of the Centre’s Covid working group of the National Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (NTAGI), NK Arora was quoted as saying by The Times of India on Sunday.
Ahmedabad-based Zydus Cadila-manufactured three-dose needle-free ZyCoV-D vaccine is the first vaccine in India that has been granted the emergency use authorisation (EUA) for being administered to people 12 years and above.
“Since it is a three-dose vaccine, we need to ensure availability of one crore doses each month for the next three months,” said Arora.
ZyCoV-D is developed in partnership with the department of biotechnology and is a first-of-its-kind DNA vaccine that produces the spike protein of the SARS-CoV-2 to prompt an immune response.
It is an intradermal vaccine that must be applied using a ‘needle-free injector’, which will help in reducing side effects, says the manufacturer.
However, talks are underway between the central government and Zydus Cadila over the pricing of the ZyCov-D. It is learnt that the pharma company have proposed a price of Rs 1,900 for its three-dose jab.
The government is in negotiation to bring the price down and a final decision on it is likely to be taken this week.