Raipur: Chhattisgarh chief minister Bhupesh Baghel has written a letter to union health minister Dr Harsh Vardhan, requesting to determine the minimum price of vaccine so that the entire country can avail the vaccine at the same rates.
Chief minister Bhupesh Baghel has mentioned in the letter that the Government of India's decision to vaccinate citizens of age above 18 years against COVID is welcome. Serum Institute has informed in a press release that they will supply vaccines at the rate of Rs 400 per vaccine to the state governments and at Rs 600 per vaccine to private hospitals. The states are expected to take action for procurement of the vaccine through tender or negotiation. It is noteworthy that so far the vaccine is being supplied by Serum Institute at the rate of Rs. 150.
He stated that we have received information from newspapers that covishield is being supplied in India at the highest rates in the world. In view of the increasing outbreak of COVID-19 infection in the country, the vaccine rates have been increased by Serum Institute with the aim of earning "extra profits". Government of India is expected to fix minimum possible rate of the vaccine, under the provision "Price Control of Drugs", to protect people of the country from any form of exploitation. Since there are only 2 companies manufacturing vaccines in the country, there is no possibility of healthy competition or getting minimum possible rate in procurement of the vaccine through tender. It is also certain that the procurement of vaccine following the tender rules would be a time-taking procedure.
Chief minister has stated in the letter that the minimum rate of the vaccines should be decided by the Government of India’s undertaking B.P.P.I , and all the states should be able to procure vaccine as per the requirement after making payment to BPPI. In this way, the entire country would get the vaccine at the same rates. Chief Minister has requested Government of India to fix the minimum vaccine rates at the earliest so that the work of vaccination can be started on a large scale from May 1, 2021.