The officials in an eastern city of China are currently going to give the residents an experimental coronavirus or COVID-19 vaccine for around $60 per person, despite the fact that the effects of the vaccine are not proven. The key workers and the people who are at high risk due to the coronavirus are going to be among the first to get the jabs, the health authority in the city of Jiaxing, Zhejiang province, stated.
The other 'volunteers' aged between 18 and 59 who are in urgent requirement of a vaccine may also apply for receiving the vaccine, which has been developed by the state-owned drug firm Sinovac Biotech, a statement mentioned. China has been vaccinating the essential workers with the vaccine candidates that are under an emergency use program launched in July. But it is going to be the first time that the government has publicly made a vaccine like this available for the citizens.
This comes as an official from Beijing has earlier announced that a vaccine is most probably going to be ready for use for the general public in less than three weeks. But few residents in Jiaxing have been offered with a double-dose experiment vaccine that costs around $60, as per a statement released by the CDC of the city on Thursday.
COVID-19 Vaccine in China
The vaccine candidate named CoronaVac, which has been developed by Sinovac Biotech is going to provide people aged between 18 and 59 who need urgent vaccination. Residents are going to be given two shots, which are to be given up to 28 days apart after signing an inoculation agreement as the effects of the vaccine have not been proven. "As it has not officially been registered for the market, this type of vaccine is only approved for urgent use," the notice stated.
But the officials did not specify the number of people who would get the experimental vaccine or when the program is going to start. A CDC staff member said, "Details of when and how the vaccines will be distributed to [the vaccination sites] across the city are still being worked out," as reported by the Global Times.
The vaccine from Sinovac is also in the late-stage trials in Indonesia, Brazil, and Turkey and the company has stated that an interim analysis of the Phase 3 trial data might come as early as November. Bio Farma, which is a state-owned firm in Indonesia that has got into a deal for around 40 million doses from Sinoveac mentioned this week that the vaccine is going to cost around $14 per dose when it gets available in the southeast Asian nation.
The authorities in China are yet to release the pricing details of the vaccines. But Beijing stated that while reasonable profits for the companies are allowed, the vaccine should be priced close to cost. The deadly virus outbreak has claimed the lives of over one million people globally till now. An effective vaccine, as per the experts, is expected by the first quarter of 2021.