India’s COVID-19 Nightmare And How Pharma Is Holding Up
A COVID-19 second wave is wreaking havoc in India but pharma appears to be holding things together for now, stretching resources amid a dip in personnel attendance and supply chain strains. Limited vaccine supplies, a spurt in API prices and an inevitable third wave could mean further turbulence ahead.
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Sun Pharma's senior leadership talks to Scrip about the focus in India on differentiated therapies; the challenges of holding adequate 'strategic inventory' amid waves of the pandemic; and where things stand for active pharmaceutical ingredients. India’s top ranked drug firm is apparently not averse to a role in COVID-19 vaccine distribution, either.
While a Star Health study found high hospitalization costs for COVID-19 patients in India, those vaccinated paid 24% less and faced 81% lower mortality risk. However, insurers are unlikely to offer lower premiums to those vaccinated, even as the prospects for an overall hike remain uncertain, say experts.
As the B.1.617 variant of SARS-CoV-2 spreads to countries including the UK and US after having caused havoc in India, vaccine effectiveness against this variant is under the lens with breakthrough cases reported post full vaccination. Meanwhile, CEPI’s offer to help in testing against variants has potential to harmonize assessment of COVID-19 vaccines performance.