Mask more important than vaccine
Amid the tussle between the State Governments and the Centre over the supply and shortage of Covid vaccines, experts say that more than vaccine what is important is to ensure that people should wear clean masks regularly and keep washing hands at regular intervals or use hand sanitisers.
Hyderabad: Amid the tussle between the State Governments and the Centre over the supply and shortage of Covid vaccines, experts say that more than vaccine what is important is to ensure that people should wear clean masks regularly and keep washing hands at regular intervals or use hand sanitisers.
According to experts, there is no need for people to panic even if there is a delay in getting the second dose of the vaccine by two or three weeks. It is not correct to think that if a second dose is not taken within 28 days, the first dose will not be effective.
The only grievance the medical fraternity has is that the political executive fails to take early measures like restricting people in public meetings, imposing restrictions on holding congregations or functions with large gathering where all health protocols are kissed goodbye and as the state starts witnessing a massive surge in caseloads, the pressure is transferred on to the doctors. Both the politicians, the government, and celebrities from different fields like cinema should take the lead in creating awareness to follow health protocols like proper usage of masks and sanitisers, doctors feel.
Experts say that shortage of vaccines is being witnessed in six states including the two Telugu states. When the vaccine stocks were there, even frontline warriors did not show interest in taking the jab. With a spike in cases now, there is a sudden heavy rush for vaccine which has led to a shortage of vaccine.
The country cannot depend on just two local vaccine manufacturers and have to procure and develop the pre-booked vaccines in order to vaccinate more and more people across age groups.
India will need to give 36.5 lakh shots per day until the end of July, in order to achieve the target of vaccinating 25 crore people with two doses.
The Serum Institute of India (SII) is aiming to expand its capacity by April end or early May by another 4-5 crore doses. At present, it can produce more than 7 crore doses a month. Currntly, Bharat Biotech is producing more than 40 lakh doses of Covaxin per month at its Hyderabad-based plant. These figures are not enough to achieve the vaccination targets.
The SII has announced a delay in the launch of Covovax (developed jointly by the company and Novavax) to September due to a temporary ban on the raw material by the US.