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Covid-19 Vaccine Could Be Available Early Next Year: Harsh Vardhan | India News


NEW DELHI: Responding to inquiries about the status of a Covid-19 vaccine in Rajya Sabha on Thursday, Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said there is a chance that it will be available in early 2021. He also said the government has aiming to bring down the Covid -19 mortality rate to less than 1% from the current 1.6%.
The minister said that three candidate vaccines have reached different stages of testing: Phase 1, Phase 2 and Phase 3. However, he cautioned that even if the vaccine is developed, it will take time before it can be made available in large quantities. Therefore, winning the battle against Covid-19 will require people to strictly maintain hand hygiene, follow respiratory etiquette by wearing masks, and adhere to social distancing rules.

Covid-19 Vaccine Could Be Available Early Next Year: Harsh Vardhan | India News

Rejecting the opinion of some members of the opposition who pointed out that the closure had not been helpful, Vardhan said that analysis by experts had shown that many more cases and deaths would have occurred without the measure. Noting that the lockdown was used to improve preparedness, he said that from a testing lab in the beginning to 1,700 labs today, the country has come a long way and is fully equipped to fight the virus with people who have access to test facilities. at short distances.
In order to remember that India has vigorously fought the virus, he reminded the House that when the pandemic began to escalate, several international experts had predicted that cases in India could rise to 300 million in July-August. , and there could be between 5 and 6 million deaths.
Harsh Vardhan said that the country’s recovery rate of 78% to 79% is one of the highest in the world. “We have around 50 lakh cases, but of these only 10 lakh are active cases in the country at the moment,” he said.
On developing a vaccine, he said the ministry of science and technology, the ICMR and pharmaceutical companies have come together to find a solution. “Vaccines may come in the future. Thorough planning is underway to execute how to manage the scenario, ”said Vardhan.
“Under the leadership of the Prime Minister, a group of experts is studying this. We hope that early next year we can have a vaccine in the country. In this sense, we are also coordinating with WHO and world organizations, ”he said.
Demanding more funding for states to fight the pandemic, opposition leader Ghulam Nabi Azad said India should work to obtain the vaccine at an “affordable price” at an early date through a mechanism such as joint procurement. He also said that the government must be “cautious” about the quality, safety and efficacy of the vaccine, as possible long-term side effects could negatively affect the country’s youth.
Azad listed several suggestions, ranging from ensuring an adequate mechanism for last-mile delivery of the new vaccine and cutting the price of disinfectants and soaps in half to establishing more level 4 and 3 biosafety laboratories in the country.

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