Himanta On COVID Vaccine Drive In Assam – Key Highlights

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Health Minister Dr. Himanta Biswa Sharma on Friday held a press conference at Janata Bhavan regarding the COVID vaccine drive in the state.

Key Highlights:

  • COVID-19 cases in the state have dropped below to 50 since December 31. On the off days, the mark went down to 20.
  • The virus is under control even though schools and colleges have been regularized.
  • “It will be necessary to get vaccinated as western countries have reported new COVID-19 cases. Once the international airlines start, it can grow again,” Sarma said.
  • India has approved two vaccines — Covishield and Covaxin. Covishield is the same vaccine that is being used in other countries including the UK. India’s approval for Covaxin is conditional as it is still “in the clinical trial mode”.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi will on Saturday launch the world’s largest coronavirus immunization drive with a record 300,000 health care workers across India scheduled to get vaccinated on the first day. This will be done at different levels.
  • Everyone cannot be included at the same time. COVID warriors will get the vaccine in the first phase. Frontline workers will be given the vaccine in the second phase, and in the third phase, people above 50 years of age will receive the vaccine. These three levels will cover 33% of Assam’s population including 1.9 lakh health workers, 1 lakh front-line workers. 2.9 lakh already registered beneficiaries will get the vaccine.
  • Around 8651 nurses and 1300 doctors have been trained for giving the doses. The covid vaccine will be offered in 65 centers across the state. Guwahati Medical College (GMCH), Tezpur Medical College & Hospital (TMCH), Nagaon Civil Hospital will commence the vaccine drive initially. So far, Assam has received 2,21,500 Covid vaccines.
  • For Covishield, the first dose of the vaccine will be given to 10 people at once and not one by one. The second dose should be taken after 24 days and the third dose should be taken after 14 days. After 45 days, the person will be completely immune from COVID-19. 
  • Initially, 12 physicians were invited to take the COVID vaccines. They are – Dr. Umesh Sharma, Dr. Dhruvajyoti Sharma, Padma Shri Dr. Elias Ali, Dr. Vibhas Chandra Goswami, Dr. Subhash Khanna, Dr. Harsh Bhattacharya, Dr. Rathindra Barman, Dr. Achyut Vaishya, Dr. Abhijit Sharma, Dr. Brajen Lahakar, Dr. Manoj Adhikari
  • After one receives the vaccine, he/she may develop a fever and also feel nauseatic, said Sarma.
  • PM Modi has barred all political leaders from receiving the vaccine until further notice.
  • 6,500 people in Assam will receive the vaccine per day. The vaccines will be administered 4 days in a week. It will be free in the first and second phases. It was however not informed how much the vaccine will cost in the later phases.
  • “The vaccine has shown 70% efficiency and the credibility of it cannot be fully confirmed yet,” – Himanta Biswa Sarma.
  • The vaccine will not be administered to pregnant women and children below 14 years of age.
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