Covishield & Covaxin: What You Need To Know Before Your Vaccine Shot

Covishield & Covaxin: What You Need To Know Before Your Vaccine Shot

Amidst a deadly wave of the COVID-19 virus that is wreaking havoc in India, the vaccination drive is being boosted to reach out across the country.

With the total case tally of more than 13.5 million cases, India is now only one spot behind the United States which has reported more than 31 million cases.

India aims to ensure the vaccination drive reaches approximately 250 million “priority people” by the end of July.

As the government grapples with an alarming rise in the cases, a decision was taken to “expand the basket of vaccines for domestic use and hasten the pace and coverage of vaccination” in lieu of curbing the spread.

So let’s get break down the two available, highly efficient vaccines doing rounds in the Indian market, namely Covidshield and Covaxin.


Covaxin is an inactivated vaccine which means that it is made up of dead corona viruses, making it safe to be injected into the body.

Bharat Biotech, a 24-year-old vaccine maker with a portfolio of 16 vaccines and exports to 123 countries, used a sample of the coronavirus, isolated by India’s National Institute of Virology.

The two doses are given four weeks apart. The vaccine can be stored at two to eight degrees Celsius.

Preliminary data from its phase three trial shows the vaccine has an efficacy rate of 81%..Covaxin will cost INR 600 per dose for the states and INR 1,200 per dose for private hospitals. The Centre’s procurement price for this vaccine too is INR 150 per dose.


The Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine is being manufactured locally by the Serum Institute of India, the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer. It says it is producing more than 60 million doses a month.

The vaccine is made from a weakened version of a common cold virus (known as an adenovirus) from chimpanzees. It has been modified to look more like coronavirus - although it can’t cause any illness.

When the vaccine is injected into a patient, it prompts the immune system to start making antibodies and primes it to attack any coronavirus infection.

The jab is administered in two doses given between four and 12 weeks apart. It can be safely stored at temperatures of two to eight degrees Celsius and can easily be delivered in existing healthcare settings.

The jab developed by Pfizer-BioNTech, which is currently being administered in several countries, must be stored at -70C and can only be moved a limited number of times - a particular challenge in India, where summer temperatures can reach fifty degrees Celsius.

The Serum Institute will give Covishield at INR 400 per dose to states and INR 600 per dose to private hospitals. The Centre’s procurement price remains INR 150 per dose.

Both vaccines have proven to be highly effective and are recommended to beat the deadly virus. Homegrown urges you to register for your shot and help effectively curb the spread.

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