Finally, the most awaited year is here and we have welcomed it with good news regarding the Covid vaccine. On Sunday India’s top drug regulator approved two covid vaccines developed by Serum Institute of India and Bharat Biotech’s for an emergency. The vaccines are 110% safe said Drug Controller of India VG Somani and added that Covishield was found to be 70.42 percent effective and Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin was “safe and provides a robust immune response”. The efforts of the scientists were hailed by the PM in his tweet.
India had started preparing for the infrastructure required to administer the vaccine as well as for its storage. Mass hubs have been created in Delhi, Chennai, Lucknow, and Panchkula and master training has taken place on national, state, and district levels for administration of the vaccine.
यह गर्व की बात है कि जिन दो वैक्सीन के इमरजेंसी इस्तेमाल को मंजूरी दी गई है, वे दोनों मेड इन इंडिया हैं। यह आत्मनिर्भर भारत के सपने को पूरा करने के लिए हमारे वैज्ञानिक समुदाय की इच्छाशक्ति को दर्शाता है। वह आत्मनिर्भर भारत, जिसका आधार है- सर्वे भवन्तु सुखिनः सर्वे सन्तु निरामया।
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) January 3, 2021
The Health Ministry today by conducting a press conference announced the rollout date for the vaccine as January 13. “Covid-19 vaccine to be rolled out within 10 days from the date of approval,” Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan said today.
A list of frontline workers, essential workers, and other vulnerable sections has been prepared and they will be the first ones to receive the first dose of the vaccine and this vaccination drive is supposed to be completed by August 2021 as per the Union Health Minister’s statement. An official app named “Co-win” is all set to be rolled out for the registration process of the vaccination.
According to documents issued by the Drugs Controller General of India, Covaxin can be administered to a population aged 12 and above in two doses day 0 and day 28. Covaxin has a shelf life of six months when stored at 2 degrees Celsius to 8 degrees Celsius. Currently, there are 20 million doses available for the vaccine but the company is planning to enhance it by 700 million in their four facilities, one at Bengaluru and three in Hyderabad.
On the other hand, Covishield can be administered to a population of 18 years and above and the dosing schedule is two doses. As per the Serum Institute of India, they have around 40-50 million doses available.
Given the effects of this global pandemic and its new strain found in the UK, India felt the need to have a vaccine at the earliest. Let us hope that we get rid of this pandemic and usher into the older times when life was simple and the pandemic had not set in.