Late Thursday, Pfizer executive Angela Lukin said the company is still negotiating with health insurers, but expects the final price tag to fall within that range.
The company plans to distribute the vaccine through the intermediate wholesalers that its products typically use, and plans to package the vaccine in single-dose vials rather than the multi-dose vials used during the pandemic, Lukin said.
These latest signs suggest that companies are preparing for the transition of the vaccine from U.S. government purchases to typical commercial sales.
U.S. government officials have said that companies such as Pfizer will eventually sell Covid-19 vaccines in the commercial market like other vaccines, drugs and tests.
Pfizer believes that the market size of the new crown vaccine is expected to reach the scale of the adult flu vaccine, but based on the current vaccination situation, it will take longer to establish the children’s market.
Pfizer said a vaccine could be commercially available as early as early next year, though that would depend on factors such as when contracts with the federal government expire and when existing U.S. supplies run out.
The company expects that most people will not have to pay for the vaccine out of pocket once commercial sales begin, Lukin said. For example, many health insurance plans cover the full cost of the annual flu shot, and Americans have so far received the Covid-19 vaccine for free during the pandemic.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the price of adult vaccines varies widely, ranging from more than $200 to less than $100.
Wells Fargo analyst Mohit Bansal said the new pricing range is well ahead of our expectations of $50 per dose and could add about $2.5-3 billion to annual revenue for Pfizer’s vaccine.
Rivals Moderna and Novavax are expected to join the ranks after Pfizer’s price hike. Moderna has previously said that the commercial market price is expected to be between $64 and $100 per dose.
Wall Street expects Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine prices to rise due to weak demand for its Covid-19 vaccine, meaning the vaccine maker will need to raise prices to meet revenue forecasts for 2023 and beyond.