India is likely to start vaccination drive around January 2021 and is now preparing the road map for what will be perhaps the world’s largest vaccination drive next year. Data shows that India has ample manufacturing capacity (about 2.5 bn doses) that would be sufficient to meet both domestic and export demand, however, analysts point out that cold chain infrastructure is a key bottleneck.


According to Credit Suisse analysts India would need about 1.7 bn Covid-19 vaccine doses to vaccinate a majority of its adult population. The target is to administer 500 mn doses (or 250 mn people) by July next year. The key vaccines the country is banking on are from AstraZeneca, Novavax and Bharat Biotech and the earliest efficacy data is not expected before November-December 2020.


As for the cold chain infrastructure, India’s current immunisation programme handles around 600 mn doses and the private sector has a capacity of about 250-300 mn doses. With this, the potential vaccinations reach 550-600 mn doses annually, claims Credit Suisse. Add to this manpower required to give the jab would be around 100,000 people. Mass inoculation of India’s population is likely to be achieved only by end of 2023, analysts feel.


The government has already started preparing database of priority beneficiaries and has issued advisory at district and state levels to prepare database and upload to Covid-19 Vaccine Beneficiary Management System. The database of healthcare workers is expected to be ready soon, database of people above 50-years and frontline workers is ready. Challenge is in preparing the database of people with co-morbidities where data is currently limited to screening of people at 48,000 health centers.


Syringe and vial makers are already in ramp up mode and India is unlikely to face any supply constraint at least in the first half of 2021. In the cold chain, analysts feel the storage is not the issue, but transportation is. The organised sector does not have reach into the hinterlands and the government is likely to use existing fruit and vegetable cold storage and the Universal Immunisation Program network to serve these areas.









India needs 1.7 bn doses for its population



Total Population (mn)

1380



Population above 14 yrs

80%



Population with antibodies by March 2021 (estimates)

25%



Number of Indians to be vaccinated (mn)

828



Dose per person

2



Total Doses (mn)

1656

















Priority groups identified for first phase of CoViD-19 vaccination in India



Priority Population Segment

No. of Beneficiaries (mn)



Healthcare Workers

7



MBBS doctors

1.1



Nurses

1.5



Frontline workers

21



Municipal workers, public transport drivers etc

15



Police and Armed forces

6



People above 50 yrs

260



People less than 50 yrs but with co-morbidities (estimates)

12



Total

300













Vaccine production and Clinical Trial timelines



Players with candidates

Capacity (mn doses)

Clinical Trial update

Temperature Requirements



Serum – AstraZeneca

1000

Phase 3 by December 2020

2-8 degree celsius



Serum – Novavax

500

Phase 2/3 to start by Dec 2020

2-8 degree celsius



Cadila – DNA vaccine

100

Phase 3 by March 2021

2-8 degree celsius



Aurobindo- Viral vector facility

300





Russian vaccine

100

Phase 2/3 India trials to end by March 2021

2-8 degree celsius ***



Biological E-J&J **

400

J&J global data expected in Q1CY21

2-8 degree celsius



Bharat Biotech *

150

Phase 3 started in October

2-8 degree celsius



Total (estimates)

2550







* Bharat Biotech is trying to take capacity up to 500 mn doses/yr


** Biological E has capacity to make 1 bn doses for Texas based Baylor College of Medicine (BCM)’s recombinant protein vaccine candidate


*** one variant may need -20 degree celsius










Key domestic logistics players offering cold chain storage and transportation across the country



Company

Capacity

Remarks



Snowman Logistics

1 lakh pallets, 289 vehicles, 33 warehouses

Largest organized player, can ramp up storage capacity to 650mn doses if it can repurpose all the food storage warehouses



Gati Kausar

5500 pallets, 160 vehicles

Primary/Secondary distribution, dedicated reefer fleet, customized cold chain solutions for multiple industries, including healthcare



Future Supply Chain Solutions

8400 Pallets, 4 Distribution Centers

Storage temperature ranges from -25°C to +25°C



Transport Corporation of India

7000 pallets

Stores and transports agricultural products, processed foods, FMCG, healthcare products, etc



Mahindra Logistics

NA

State-of-the-art temperature controlled warehouse for pharmaceuticals opened recently












Current Cold Storage – electric and non-electric – in use in India



ELECTRIC




Equipment

Temperature (degree celsius)



Cold Rooms

2 to 8



Walk in cooler

2 to 8



Walk in Freezers

-15 to -25



Ice Lined Refrigerators

2 to 8



Deep Freezer

-15 to -25



NON-ELECTRIC




Cold Box

2 to 8



Vaccine carrier

2 to 8





Source: Company Updates, Credit Suisse

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