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3.17 crore of doses of Covid vaccines administered in two months | India News


NEW DELHI: India administered more than 3.17 crore doses of Covid vaccines in two months since the launch of the mega vaccination campaign on January 16, even as limited availability of injections, health infrastructure and initial hesitation have restricted coverage.
Only about 1.48 crore of healthcare and frontline workers, about 50% of the total 3 crore workforce identified in this category to receive the injections on a priority basis, have been covered as of Monday (7pm) . 43.97 lakh from healthcare and 13.23 lakh from frontline workers have also received the second dose of the vaccine so far.
On Monday, doses of 18.63 lakhs of the vaccines were administered until 7pm.
Low vaccination coverage has become a major concern, particularly as many states witnessed a second spike in Covid-19 cases, resulting in a steady rise in the overall daily case count.
Experts point to the urgent need to increase coverage by relaxing age restrictions, targeted vaccinations in high-burden districts, increasing the period between two doses to achieve maximum coverage with available doses, and allowing more vaccines to scale up. the vaccine kitten.
“In view of the large number of unvaccinated people, who are likely to become victims of a possible second increase, it is important to rapidly increase vaccination in the categories that are currently given and, furthermore, to open it to everyone up to 30 years of age. age. Any possible vaccine shortage could be compensated for by including more vaccines, increasing production and delaying the second dose of the Covidshield vaccine for up to 8-12 weeks, as has been suggested by the WHO, ”says Dr. Anoop Misra, President of Fortis C- Doc. .
“Not covering the vulnerable population fast and broad enough is a missed opportunity. There is a mismatch between supply and demand; production limitations could be a limiting factor, ”says Giridhar Babu, a member of the National Working Group for Covid-19 and an epidemiologist with the Public Health Foundation of India.
Although immunization coverage against Covid-19 expanded with the government extending vaccination to people over the age of 60 and to people between the ages of 60 and 45 with specific comorbidities as of March 1, it remains moderate as the majority of the population is still waiting to receive their vaccine. Shooting.
Of the total Rs 3.17 million vaccine doses administered as of Monday night, about 35% were administered to the age-prioritized population.
Officials say the availability of more vaccines and greater involvement of the private sector in specific states are required to expand coverage.
“Opening other categories won’t help unless supplies improve. We would not like to have a situation where people demand a vaccine and are not getting it or someone who has received a first dose does not receive a second. Therefore, it is necessary to guarantee the supply of vaccines. In addition, there must be vaccinators. We have been asking the private sector to create more sessions, but even they have their limitations because other non-Covid services cannot be compromised, ”said a Health Ministry official.
“Allow Sputnik, Moderna and J&J vaccine for use in India. Get companies to enter the Indian market at a regulated price. In the meantime, commission rapid studies to prospectively examine the immunogenicity, safety and efficacy of two doses with different vaccines, ”says Babu.
While the government is already considering these suggestions, officials are urging people to go out and get vaccinated.
“The capacity in many days is still underutilized because some people still doubt and some states are lagging in the implementation of the unit,” said the official.

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