The Union Health Ministry on Tuesday informed that the Centre has placed an order to purchase 25 crores doses of Covishield and 19 crore doses of Covaxin.

“The Union Health Ministry has placed an order with Serum Institute of India for 25 crore doses of Covishield and with Bharat Biotech for 19 crore doses of Covaxin,” a statement issued by the ministry said.

“These 44 crore (25+19 cr) doses of COVID-19 vaccines will be available till December 2021, starting now,” it said.

This comes after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s announcement for a centralised COVID-19 vaccine drive for all Indian citizens above 18 years of age.

The Prime Minister on Monday announced that the Centre will provide free vaccines to all Indian citizens above 18 years of age.

He said the Centre will buy 75 per cent of the total production of the vaccine producers and provide to the states free of cost and 25 per cent vaccination that was with states will now be undertaken by the Government of India.

The Prime Minister said that the system of 25 per cent vaccines being procured directly by the private hospitals will continue. State governments will monitor that only Rs 150 service charge is levied by the private hospitals over the decided price of the vaccines.

Earlier, the vaccination for the beneficiaries aged between 18-44 years was taken care of by the state governments. (ANI)