HYDERABAD: Sputnik V vaccine has been formally launched in Hyderabad on Monday by Dr Reddy's Laboratories (DRL) in collaboration with Apollo Hospitals. Thirty staff members of Dr Reddy's were administered the vaccine on the occasion.
DRL has imported 1.5 lakh doses of Sputnik V for its soft launch, the first phase of it being in Hyderabad. Five thousand staff and families of DRL are to be administered the vaccine by Apollo Hospitals, Hyderabad.
While the first dose has been given in Apollo Hospitals, Hyderabad, the same will be extended to Visakhapatnam and thereafter to group hospitals in Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Ahmedabad, Chennai, Kolkata and Pune.
The first and second doses of Sputnik V are distinctly different. The gap between two doses of Sputnik V is 21 days. Apollo Hospitals said the cost of vaccination is Rs 1,200 and Rs 1,250.
DRL (Branded Markets) chief executive officer M. V. Ramana says, "We have got stocks of both the doses and will scale up accordingly. Presently, we have tied up with Apollo Hospitals as a cold chain is required for the vaccine."
Dr Reddy's is tying up with local manufacturers to produce Sputnik V within the country. It will take three months for technology transfer.
It is stated discussion are on with union government for Sputnik V vaccinations in government hospitals. There are also eight states that have shown interest in the vaccine but details are to be worked out.
Dr K. Hari Prasad, president, hospitals division of Apollo Hospitals Enterprises Limited, said, "Opening up vaccination programmes to private sector will help accelerate vaccination. We are currently administering the other Covid vaccines at 60 locations across the country. Sputnik V is going to be another significant contribution to ease availability of Covid vaccines within the community."
Sputnik V is also included in the COWIN app of government of India. But due to technical glitches, it will take time to reflect on the app, DRL officials said.