Hyderabad: The Union Health Ministry on Tuesday fixed the maximum rates of Covid vaccines for the private hospitals. The cost of Covaxin is priced at Rs 1,410 for a dose while the Covishiled is priced at Rs 780. Russia's Sputnik V vaccine will cost Rs 1,145 per dose in private hospitals.

Earlier today, Dr VK Paul, Member-Health, Niti Ayog, during a press briefing, said that Centre has placed an order to purchase 25 crores doses of Covishield and 19 crore doses of Covaxin. He said the vaccines will be available till December 2021, starting now.

"Government has also placed an order to purchase 30 crore doses of Biological E's vaccine, which will be available by September," he said. The government has already released a 30 per cent advance to the Serum Institute of India and Bharat Biotech for procurement of both vaccines.

According to the revised vaccination policy of the Government of India, vaccine doses from the Government of India will be allocated to states and Union Territories based on criteria such as population, disease burden and the progress of vaccination. Any wastage of vaccines will adversely affect the allocation.

This revised policy comes a day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi's announcement of the modified COVID-19 vaccination policy where he had said that states and Union Territories will receive free vaccine doses for persons of the age 18 years and older.

As per the new guidelines, the Government of India will procure 75 per cent of the vaccines being produced by the manufacturers in the country. The vaccines procured will continue to be provided free of cost to states and Union Territories as it has been from the commencement of the national vaccination programme. These doses will be administered by the States/UTs free of cost to all citizens as per priority through the government vaccination centres.

The Government of India will provide States/UTs advance information about the vaccine doses to be supplied to them. The States/UTs should similarly, further allocate doses well in advance to districts and vaccination centres. They should also put in the public domain the information about the above availability of vaccines at all centres, and widely disseminate it among the local population, maximizing the visibility and convenience of citizens.

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