GOI proposes more than 1 COVID vaccine considering population size
WITH the number of COVID-19 cases galloping and recovery rate of the patients appreciably improving in India Harsh Vardhan Goyal, Union Minister for Health & Family Welfare, has said Government is considering using more than one vaccine to cater to the large population size. One vaccine or vaccine manufacturer will not be able to fulfill the requirements of vaccinating the whole country, he said while responding to people’s queries on his social media accounts as part of the fifth episode of his Sunday Samvaad. The Health Minister said India may have to tie up with more than one vaccine manufacturer to ensure that everyone in the country receives protection against the coronavirus when a vaccine becomes available. Stressing the need for making sure that the most vulnerable groups get it first, he said all Covid-19 vaccines currently in India are in phases 1, 2 or 3 of trials with results awaited. Adequate safety and efficacy data is required for emergency use authorization vaccine approval for ensuring patient safety. Nobody should remain complacent as vaccines will be available hopefully later this year and hence, people should take all precautions during the coming festive season commencing with the Navratri, Dr Harsh Vardhan added. He also asked people to avoid assembling in large numbers during festivals and must wear masks even at places of worship. Dr Harsh Vardhan denied reports that the Government was prioritizing young and working-class for the COVID-19 vaccine for economic reasons. The prioritisation of groups for the COVID-19 vaccine shall be based on two key considerations. These are Occupational hazard and risk of exposure to infection, and the risk of developing severe disease and increased mortality. Meanwhile, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has said, when safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines are ready, they will be allocated based on principles agreed by the ACT-Accelerator and its partners. It is to be ensured that essential and vulnerable populations are protected first and that initial supplies are used wisely. The COVAX Facility stands for safe development, equitable and smart prioritization of eventual COVID19 vaccines. The Geneva headquartered WHO’S Director-General said. (Picture courtesy to Zee News).