At a recent press conference to announce the launch of its vaccine Prevenar 13, Pfizer MD Kewal Handa declined to share revenue numbers of the vaccine’s predecessor Prevenar in India. That’s not surprising – companies rarely reveal internal numbers for specific products. But what was surprising is that it did not provide ORG-IMS numbers either. The reason the company cited: ORG-IMS audits are not set up to capture vaccines data especially since these are bought directly by doctors or hospitals from stockists. Hence, they said, it would not be accurate.
Now if companies won’t reveal their numbers, and the only available database in the country isn’t good enough then does this mean we will never know how big the private vaccines market in India is? Vaccines after all are a high growth sector. Globally more money is going into vaccine research and development than before. And India’s baby cohort and growing middle-class mean that it’s a potentially large market for these companies. Surely there has to be a way?