Russia’s COVID-19 vaccine

The mass vaccination of Russian citizens with the domestically-produced Sputnik V vaccine against COVID-19 might start next month, Vasily Ignatiev, the CEO of the R-Pharm pharmaceutical company, said on Tuesday.

Ignatiev said this at the Open innovations forum, which is underway in Moscow.

“At the moment, there are five production sites that are involved in the scaling of the production of the Sputnik [V] vaccine.

“From the general assessment, large-scale vaccination can be launched from the end of November or in December,” Ignatiev said.

The chief executive further noted that the Russian manufacturers were working around the clock to make mass vaccination possible in the nearest future.

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“Yesterday evening, we had a big meeting of all manufacturers with [Deputy Prime Minister] Tatyana Golikova in the government,” Ignatiev said.

Sputnik V, which was developed by the Gamaleya Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology and produced in tandem with the Russian Direct Investment Fund, became the world’s first registered vaccine against the coronavirus disease on Aug. 11.

The vaccine is currently undergoing Phase III clinical trials.

Aside from R-Pharm, two other Russian pharmaceutical companies, Binnopharm and Generium, were announced as producers of the Sputnik V vaccine.