Covishield vs Covaxin effectiveness: A detailed difference

Covishield vs Covaxin effectiveness: A detailed difference

The second phase of the COVID-19 vaccination drive has already begun in India, and many people are still unaware of how Covaxin and Covishield are different from each other.

Before deciding which Covid-19 vaccine to take, here is given all the major differences between Covishield and Covaxin you need to know.

Production and working

  • Covishield is the Indian variant of AZD1222, the vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and University of Oxford. Pune-based Serum Institute of India (SII) developed and manufactured Covishield through a licence from AstraZeneca and Oxford. This vaccine is made from a weakened version of a common cold virus (known as an adenovirus) from chimpanzees. It has been modified to look more like coronavirus – although it can’t cause illness. When administered it prompts the immune system to start making antibodies and primes it to attack any coronavirus infection.
  • Covaxin by Bharat Biotech is developed in collaboration with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and National Institute of Virology (NIV). This vaccine is developed using Whole-Virion Inactivated Vero Cell derived platform technology. It destroys the ability of the virus to multiply in the human body and increases the immunity system to fight the virus.

For which age group of people vaccines are authorized for?

  • Covishield is administered to the people who are more than 18 years old. Covaxin is also administered to the people whose age is more than 18 years.

Should a woman get vaccinated during pregnancy?

  • Although professional  organisation like FOGSI have recommended that pregnant or breastfeeding women be given the vaccine but the current government guildelines do not. Pregnant woman are more likely to get severely ill with COVID-19 compared with non-pregnant women. Getting a COVID-19 vaccine during pregnancy can protect a woman from severe illness from COVID-19.
  • NOTE: *People with history of COVID-19 infection, with comorbidities and those who are immunocompromised CAN take the vaccine.

What Precautions should be taken?

  • Administer with caution in people with history of bleeding or coagulation disorder.

Doses and Efficacy

  • Both the vaccines Covishield and Covaxin comprise two doses. If people are taking Covaxin, then the second dose should be taken within four to six weeks. Covaxin has an overall efficacy of 78 per cent.
  • If people are getting Covishield, then the second dose should be taken in four to eight weeks. Covishield has an overall efficacy of 70 per cent, but it can be over 90 per cent when administered as a first dose followed by a second dose four to eight weeks later.


  • Both Covishield and Covaxin can be stored at 2-8 degrees Centigrade, which is a household refrigerator temperature.

Interchangeability of vaccines

  • Interchangeability of vaccines are not permitted. Second dose should be of the same vaccine as the first dose. If you are taking the Covishield vaccine as the first dose you then you are not permitted to take any other vaccine as the second dose.

Adverse Effect

  • According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO), side effects of Covishield include fever, fatigue, headaches, body aches, chills, nausea. A person who had taken Covishield might experience tenderness, pain, warmth, redness, itching, swelling and brushing at the injection site.
  • A person who had taken Covaxin might also experience side effects like pain and swelling at injection site, headache, fever, fatigue, myalgia, abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, dizziness-giddiness, tremor, sweating, cold and cough.

Pricing of Vaccine

  • Covishield will be given at Rs.400 per dose to states and Rs.600 per dose to private hospitals.
  • On the other hand, Covaxin will cost Rs.600 per dose for the states and Rs.1,200 per dose for private hospitals.


  • Contraindications is same for both vaccines.
  • History of anaphylactic or allergic reaction to one of the components of the vaccine or to a previous dose of COVID-19 vaccine. Immediate or delayed onset anaphylaxis or allergic reaction to other vaccines, injectable therapies, pharmaceutical products, food items etc.

Components of Vaccine

  • The Components of Covishield are Aluminium Hydroxide Gel, L-Histidine, L-Histidine hydrochloride monohydrate, Magnesium chloride hexahydrate, Polysorbate 80, Ethanol, Sucrose, Sodium chloride, and Disodium edetate dihydrate (EDTA).
  • The components of Covaxin are Aluminium Hydroxide Gel, TLR 7/8 agonist, 2-Phenoxyethanol and Phosphate Buffered Saline [NKA1].

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