Amid rising coronavirus cases in the country, Dr Randeep Guleria, director of AIIMS and member of the national task force on Covid-19 management, has said that we now have vaccines, which are in their final trial stage in India.
Dr Randeep Guleria is hopeful of a coronavirus vaccine by the end of this month or early next month. “We should get emergency use authorisation from Indian regulatory authorities to start giving vaccine to public,” Dr Randeep Guleria added.
The AIIMS Director said that there is good data available that the vaccines are very safe. “Safety and efficacy of vaccine are not compromised at all. Around 70,000-80,000 volunteers have received the vaccine and no significant serious adverse effects were seen. The data shows that in the short term vaccine is safe,” news agency ANI quoted Guleria as saying.
He further added, “Chennai trial case is an incidental finding rather than related to vaccine. When we vaccinate a large number of people, some of them may have some other disease, which may not be related to vaccine.”
Coronavirus vaccine distribution
On vaccine distribution, Dr Randeep Guleria said, “Work is going on at war-footing both at the Centre and the state level for vaccine distribution plan in terms of maintaining cold chain, having appropriate storehouses available, developing strategy, training vaccinators and availability of syringes.”
On Covid-19 wave in India, he said, “Now, we’ve seen a decline in current wave and I hope this will continue if we are able to have a good Covid-19 appropriate behaviour. We’re close to having a big change related to a pandemic if we manage this behaviour for the next three months.”
Guleria also said that in the beginning, Covid-19 vaccine will not be available in sufficient doses to give to everyone. “We need a priority list to see that we vaccinate those who’ve high chances of dying due to Covid. Elderly, people with comorbidities and front line workers should be vaccinated first,” he added.
The AIIMS Director also said that once the booster dose is given, vaccine will give good amount of anti-body production and will start giving protection. “This will last for many months giving protection for a significant time when numbers will be less. We need to see type of immunity vaccine gives,” Dr Randeep Guleria added.
Guleria’s comments came as India reported 35,551 new coronavirus infections in the last 24 hours, according to the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare’s data on Thursday.
The overall Covid-19 cases reached 95,34,965, including 4,22,943 active ones and 89,73,373 recoveries. With 526 new fatalities, the cumulative death toll mounted to 1,38,648.