COVID-19 Vaccination Drive in India - Medx Health Assistance
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COVID-19 Vaccination Drive in India

With the active caseload accounting to merely 2% of the total cases and recoveries crossing 96%, India rolled out the world’s largest COVID-19 vaccination drive on January 16th, 2021. Being one of the world’s biggest drug-makers, India to the rescue of not only the second largest populated country but also the world. On January 19th 2021, India announced that it will send COVID-19 vaccines under grant assistance to several countries. 

 

Image source: PTI
Image source: PTI

Vaccinating the highest number of people on Day1, much higher than many other countries like the USA, the UK and France, India set a record. Launched at 10:30 AM via video conferencing this was the start of the climax of the pandemic. Vaccination was held simultaneously at 3006 session sites across all States and Union Territories with around 100 beneficiaries vaccinated at each site. With 16,755 personnel actively involved in vaccinating 1, 19,181 beneficiaries nationwide, and 3,429 beneficiaries in Defense institutions, Day1 successfully concluded. All the COVID-19 vaccination session sites across the country were ensured with adequate quantities of vaccines and logistics.

 

Two types of COVID-19 vaccines being supplied for the vaccination drive:

  • Covishield vaccine (made by Serum Institute of India Ltd) 
  • Covaxin vaccine (made by Bharat Biotech International Ltd

These vaccines that India currently manufactures require normal refrigeration, unlike those produced by Pfizer-BioNTech, that need to be kept in extremely cold temperatures of minus 70 degrees Celsius that is minus 94 degrees Fahrenheit, and those by Moderna have to be stored at minus 20 degrees Celsius that is minus 4 degrees Fahrenheit. Moreover, Bharat Biotech said that it is fully prepared to meet the needs of India and global public health. 

 “With a population of 138 crore and a history of Universal Immunization Program which involves targeted vaccination against twelve vaccine preventable diseases, India stands at the cusp of recording history and shows the way to peers across the globe. After Smallpox and Polio, it is the turn of COVID. All the remote, hard to reach areas, urban slums, tribal belts are all covered in today’s exercise.” said Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare, on January 16th, 2021.

India administered over 5.7 million doses of Covid-19 vaccine till February 6th, 2021 becoming the fastest country to reach the mark on Day 22. To be precise, 5775322 COVID warriors were vaccinated in the 1,15178 sessions held till February 6th. The first group of beneficiaries includes healthcare and frontline workers. The second group to receive COVID 19 vaccine will be people over 50 years of age and people under 50 years with comorbid conditions.

A rising number of countries have already approached India for the procurement of anti-coronavirus vaccines. With 64 lakh doses supplied as grant assistance and 165 lakh supplied on commercial basis, over 229 lakh doses of coronavirus vaccines have been provided to various countries as of February 12th 2021:

Consignments of coronavirus vaccine doses supplied as gifts to: Bangladesh (20 lakh), Myanmar (17 lakh), Nepal (10 lakh), Bhutan (1.5 lakh), the Maldives (1 lakh), Mauritius (1 lakh), Seychelles (50,000), Sri Lanka (5 lakh), Bahrain (1 lakh), Oman (1 lakh), Afghanistan (5 Lakhs), Barbados (1 Lakh) and Dominica (70,000).

Countries which received vaccines on commercial basis:  Brazil (20 lakh), Morocco (60 lakh), Bangladesh (50 lakh), Myanmar (20 lakh), Egypt (50,000), Algeria (50,000), South Africa (10 lakh), Kuwait (2 lakh) and UAE (2 lakh).

The Ministry of External Affairs claimed that India will continue to take forward the global vaccine supply initiative and cover more countries in a phased manner. It is said that in the coming weeks, vaccines will be supplied to more countries in Africa, Latin America, CARICOM and the Pacific Island states, among more; 1 million doses will be supplied to UN health workers under GAVI’s COVAX facility. From providing HCQ to personal protection equipment to vaccines as well as food, India has been the first responder to its neighboring countries, throughout the pandemic. The Ministry of External Affairs also said that India sees international cooperation in the fight against COVID-19 pandemic as its duty.

Route to Victory – #largestvaccinationdrive

 

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