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India’s first Nasal vaccine price & launch date announced: Here’s eligibility, efficiency, and more

India’s first Nasal vaccine price & launch date announced: Here’s eligibility, efficiency, and more

By Sanjay Maurya

Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech on Tuesday (December 27) said the nasally administered vaccine, iNCOVACC, will be available for public use from the fourth week of January and will cost INR 800 (excluding GST) for private markets and INR 325 (excluding GST) for governments.

iNCOVACC is the world’s first intranasal vaccine for COVID to be approved for a primary two-dose schedule and as a heterologous booster dose. The nasal vaccine was introduced on the CoWIN platform last week.

Bharat Biotech

Biotechnology Company

  • Type – Private Limited Company
  • Industry – Biotechnology
  • Founded – 1996; 26 years ago
  • Founder – Krishna Ella
  • Headquarters – Genome Valley, Turakapally, Hyderabad
  • Area served – Worldwide
  • Key people – Krishna Ella (Chairman & MD)
  • Products – ROTAVAC, TypbarTCV, Biopolio, Comvac, JENVAC, COVAXIN
  • Subsidiaries – Chiron Behring Vaccines

The Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) gave Bharat Biotech permission to market the nasal vaccine in India earlier this month. It is a recombinant replication-deficient adenovirus vectored vaccine with a pre-fusion-stabilised SARS-CoV-2 spike protein. The vaccine, known as iNCOVACC, is intended for customers in low- and middle-income nations. Additionally, this is India’s first needle-free vaccine.

Not for Those Who Have Already Taken Booster

“It (the nasal vaccine) is recommended as the first booster. For example, if a person has already received a precautionary dose, it is not recommended for that person. It is for those who have not yet taken a precaution dose,” Dr. NK Arora, who has been closely associated with the rollout of the vaccines since the beginning of the pandemic, told NDTV.

A hospital can charge INR 150 as a service fee

According to reports, private hospitals can charge a maximum of INR 150 per dose as a service charge over the cost of the vaccine. By adding this amount, the cost of the nasal vaccine can be INR 1,000.

The vaccine was developed in collaboration with Washington University, St Louis, which had developed and designed the recombinant adenoviral vectored construct and evaluated in preclinical studies for efficacy.

Since the vaccine is given through the nose, which is where the virus enters the body, it has the potential to prevent infection and break the cycle of transmission, as well as prevent lung damage.

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