New Delhi: Days after India launched the pilot phase of the Russian-made vaccine Sputnik V, the third vaccine approved in the country in the fight against coronavirus, Fortis Healthcare and Apollo Hospitals have started to administer the vaccine. The private chain hospitals are administering the vaccine at two of their branches in Delhi-NCR, officials said on Thursday. According to a spokesperson of Indraprastha Apollo in Delhi, the vaccine is being administered in a staged manner since Wednesday. So far around 1,000 people have received the Sputnik V vaccine shot, the spokesperson added.
“On-the-spot registration and walk-in facility for Sputnik V is currently restricted, we are encouraging beneficiaries to take appointments through the CoWIN app,” the official said.
A Fortis Healthcare official said that the hospital chain started providing Sputnik V jabs last week at Fortis Memorial Research Institute, Gurugram, and Fortis Hospital in Mohali. “In order to accelerate the vaccination drive, we are introducing the vaccine at Fortis Escorts Hospital, Jaipur from Friday. We have received a good response and a total of 2,193 people have been vaccinated till now,” he said.
He added that the hospital received fresh supplies of Sputnik V which will help it ramp up the inoculation drive. There was a delay in the supply of vaccines. According to a hospital source, the delay could be linked to the surge in cases in Russia which led the country to start a large-scale vaccination drive for its population. Fortis Healthcare had earlier announced that it will start administering the two-dose Russian vaccine at its Gurugram and Mohali facilities from June 19.
An official of Madhukar Rainbow Children’s Hospital in Delhi said that the hospital will receive Sputnik V doses from Hyderabad-based Dr Reddy’s Laboratories, the marketing partner for the vaccine in India, in three to four days. The Centre has fixed the price of the vaccine at Rs 1,145 per dose. The prices of the other vaccines being administered in the country, Covishield and Covaxin, stand at Rs 780 and Rs 1,410 per dose, respectively.
Sputnik V Vaccine
Russia’s Gamaleya National Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology has developed the vaccine and the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) is the governing body for marketing it globally. The vaccine consists of two jabs that are administered 21 days apart. The doses are different and not interchangeable. Sputnik V uses two different viruses that cause the common cold (Adenovirus) in humans. Over 60 countries have authorised the use of the vaccine in the fight against the pandemic. Days after the vaccine arrived in India, it was deployed under a limited pilot soft launch on May 14. The goal behind the launch was to first test the administration, storage and integration of the vaccine across the online platform. According to the medical journal, Lancet, the efficacy rate of the vaccine stands at 91.6 per cent.
(With inputs from PTI)