New Delhi: Zydus Cadila Chiarman, Pankaj R Patel said in a panel discussion on ‘Race for Covid Vaccine: More than just a Cure’ that India needs to invest between Rs. 3,000 to 5,000 crore for creating enough facilities to make a huge number of vaccines required for the Indian population.
“…If India has to produce and deliver 130 crore doses to Indian people in one year time, my opinion is that India would need to invest in manufacturing facilities to the extent of roughly Rs. 3,000 to 5,000 crore to create additional capacity to make it happen”, said Patel.
He added that the vaccine is not the final solution to fight against COVID-19 problems as there is a probability of the vaccines to be expensive than other vaccines as they are coming from a very difficult platform. So, there is a lot to think about as to how the pricing would go.
“Vaccine alone in my opinion is not the solution to the problem. We need the vaccine and also we need more treatment protocols to make sure we are able to take care of it because I think the way the vaccine trials are designed currently globally, there is not going to be a possibility of immunity in 100 per cent of people”, he added in the same event at AIMA (All India Management Association)
He talked of various aspects of the COVID-19 vaccine as to execute the vaccine in such a large population like in India is a different phase altogether. According to him, every vaccine requires at least two doses and even if it immunizes 50% of the Indian population, it takes 130 crore doses of vaccines but unfortunately in India, we do not have that infrastructure to produce such a huge number of vaccine sooner.
Patel mentioned another challenge of the vaccine. He said, “How long the immunity will last with this vaccine? If the vaccine is going to give a long-term immunity, it will be wonderful, but if it provides short-term immunity then we will have to keep on immunizing people again and again”.
He pointed out that alone vaccine will not be enough. People still need to maintain social distancing, wearing of masks, isolation if tested positive will continue to remain important.