Hyderabad-based pharma company Dr Reddy’s Laboratories (DRL) on Monday soft-launched the pilot programme of Sputnik V Covid-19 vaccination in the country. The company said it had tied up with Apollo Hospitals for the vaccination drive across the country, starting with Hyderabad. This pilot phase will allow Dr Reddy’s and Apollo to test the arrangements and cold chain logistics and prepare for the launch.
Dr Reddy’s has received 1.5 lakh Sputnik V vaccine for the first dose last week and the second consignment of 60,000 for the second dose during the weekend. Dr Reddy’s and Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) had entered into a partnership to conduct clinical trials of Sputnik V. It got the emergency use authorisation in India on April 13, and was granted permission from the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) to import the Sputnik V vaccine into India.
The Sputnik V vaccines for the pilot programme would be supplied by Dr Reddy’s from the first batch of 1.5 lakh doses imported by them for the soft launch. After Hyderabad and Visakhapatnam, the programme will be extended to Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Ahmedabad, Chennai, Kolkata and Pune. DRL will use the Apollo Hospitals’ network nationally for storing, administering and monitoring the drive.