US to pay Sanofi, GSK $2.1-B for 100 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine
The US government will pay $2.1 billion to Sanofi SA and GlaxoSmithKline Plc for 100 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines covering 50 million people and underwrite the drug makers’ testing and manufacturing.
Each of the 50 million Americans will receive two doses.
The deal will cost around $42 per person inoculated.
Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline would conduct clinical trials for the vaccine in September.
The US government has the option to purchase an additional 500 million doses at an unspecified price.
Sanofi executive Clement Lewin said the companies have yet to agree with the government on the price for the additional doses.
According to Alex Azar, secretary of the US Department of Health and Human Services, the product being developed by Sanofi and GSK has the potential to bring hundreds of millions of safe and effective doses.
The award is so far the biggest from the White House initiative to accelerate access to vaccines and treatments to fight COVID-19 dubbed ‘Operation Warp Speed.’
Last week, the US agreed to pay Pfizer Inc and BioNTech SE $2 billion deal for 50 million courses of the potential vaccine.
The price per patient is $40.
The coronavirus has infected 4.5 million Americans and killed over 152,000 Americans.
The US Centers for Disease Control forecasts between 168,000 and 182,000 total fatalities by August 22.
The deaths will supposedly rise fastest in Alabama, Tennessee, Washington state, Kentucky, New Jersey, and Puerto Rico.