Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories has partnered with Hyderabad-based Rockwell Industries, which specialises in commercial cold chain appliance production, to provide vaccine freezers for storing Sputnik V, the Russian-made Coronavirus disease (Covid-19) vaccine, across India.
The arrangement to supply at least 750 Covid-19 vaccine freezers to various hospitals and institutes around the country has been finalised, with 500 of them dedicated to Sputnik V. Dr Reddy’s has previously partnered with the Russian Direct Investment Fund, which markets Sputnik V globally, to provide the vaccine’s first 250 million doses. Dr Reddy’s announced a restricted pilot soft launch of the Sputnik V vaccine in India on May 14, ahead of a commercial launch later in June, to evaluate, among other things, cold chain storage facilities. The vaccine’s safety and efficacy are both dependent on the freezer. To stay stable and potent, the Sputnik V vaccination needs to be kept at -18°C. According to Rockwell, it creates freezers that meet the WHO PQS (World Health Organization – Performance, Quality, and Safety) standard and can withstand a variety of harsh usage conditions, including in rural areas, while maintaining the desired temperature range, thereby overcoming the vaccine cold chain barrier.
“This is a huge endorsement for our Covid-19 vaccine freezer. Our technology ensures that Sputnik V’s storage management at vaccine centres meets the stringent refrigeration standards set forth by Sputnik V manufacturers,” said Ashok Gupta, managing director, Rockwell Industries Ltd.