New Delhi: India began its Coronavirus vaccination drive today after two vaccines– one by Serum Institute and another by Bharat Biotech– got approval for restricted emergency use earlier this month. This is a big step in the fight against Coronavirus as nearly three crore high-risk people will be vaccinated against Coronavirus in the first phase of inoculation.Also Read - 'Brain Fog' In COVID Survivors Could Be Result Of Virus Changing Patients’ Spinal Fluid, Finds Study
Vaccine sites will either offer Covishield or Covaxin to recipients without giving them an option to choose from the two. However, people can choose to not get vaccinated as inoculation is not mandatory. So far, the government has procured 1.1 crore ‘Covishield’ and 55 lakh ‘Covaxin’ vaccines at a cost of Rs 200 and Rs 206 per dose, respectively. Also Read - UK Classifies New Form Of Omicron As 'Variant Under Investigation'
According to Department of Biotechnology Secretary Renu Swarup, all Indian vaccines will have to be stored at 2-8 degrees Celsius as the logistics have been worked out while considering temperature as a factor. Also Read - Thailand Tourism Latest Update: Thailand Opens up For Quarantine-Free Entry For Vaccinated Visitors
However, if you are wondering about the efficacy of the two vaccines, here’s all you need to know about it:
This vaccine has been developed by the University of Oxford and British-Swedish pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca and manufactured in India by Serum Institute. The frontrunner ‘Covishield’ is stored and transported at a refrigeration temperature of 2-8 degrees Celsius. The vaccine has shown an average efficacy of 70.4 per cent in a pooled analysis of interim data from late-stage trials published in The Lancet.
‘Covaxin’ is a highly purified and inactivated two-dose SARS-CoV-2 vaccine, manufactured in a “Vero cell” manufacturing platform by Bharat Biotech. Beneficiaries who will be administered Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin will be paid a compensation in case they suffer adverse events post-vaccination, a report by Times of India said.
If the report is to believed, vaccination sites at the six Mumbai central government hospitals will give Covaxin. The form further stated that in case of an adverse event, beneficiaries will be treated at the designated hospital or authorized centers. This assumes significance as many people have questioned the liability of Covaxin with the vaccine maker yet to complete its third phase clinical trials. Officials are now waiting for the vaccination drive to begin to see if the consent form will help in instilling confidence in the vaccine.