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In final leg of Sputnik V pilot rollout, will announce commercial launch soon, says Dr Reddy's

"Being a limited pilot phase presently, registration on CoWIN is not open yet to members of the public. This will become open at the time of our commercial launch," the company said in a statement on Wednesday.

June 17, 2021 / 07:23 AM IST
Representative image of the Russian Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine

Representative image of the Russian Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine

 
 
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Dr Reddy's on June 16 said that the pilot launch of the Sputnik V vaccine in India, is currently in its final leg, as the drug maker gears up for commercial launch.

Dr Reddy's didn't specify the commercial launch date of the Sputnik V vaccine.

Dr Reddy's is the brand custodian of the Sputnik V vaccine in India and has the sole distribution rights for the first 250 million doses of the vaccine in India as per its agreement with Russian sovereign fund RDIF.

Sputnik V is priced at Rs 995 per dose. including GST.

Sputnik V vaccine was launched on pilot basis by Dr. Reddy's in Hyderabad on May 14, and has been successfully scaled up to other cities such as Visakhapatnam, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Kolkata, Delhi, Baddi, Chennai,

Miryalaguda and Kolhapur, with more cities to follow in the next few days.

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COVID-19 Vaccine

Frequently Asked Questions

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How does a vaccine work?

A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.

How many types of vaccines are there?

There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.

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"Being a limited pilot phase presently, registration on CoWIN is not open yet to members of the public. This will become open at the time of our commercial launch," the company said in a statement on Wednesday.

The company said the pilot phase has allowed it to test cold storage arrangements of -18 degree C temperature in these cities, CoWIN integration, track-and-trace and other logistical arrangements ahead of its commercial launch.

"Adequate numbers of cold chain units are being deployed, and the last mile cold chain arrangement is being validated at every partner hospital to ensure seamless storage and handling of the vaccine," the company said.

"All necessary supply arrangements are being executed to ensure availability of both dose components in the right quantity and at the right time at partner hospitals," it added.
Viswanath Pilla is a business journalist with 14 years of reporting experience. Based in Mumbai, Pilla covers pharma, healthcare and infrastructure sectors for Moneycontrol.
first published: Jun 16, 2021 08:54 pm

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