Accenture in India, the local arm of the American-Irish multinational entity, will cover the COVID-19 vaccination cost for its employees and their dependents, the company announced on March 3.
The company "strongly supports the scientific and public health advice that encourages vaccination," it said in an official press release.
For employees who are eligible under the current phase of vaccination, and "who choose to be vaccinated", Accenture in India will cover the entire cost for them and their family members who are listed in the medical benefits program, Rekha Menon, Chairperson and Senior MD of the company, said.
"As we continue to navigate the pandemic, nothing is more important than the health and well-being of our people," she further added.
On March 1, the Indian government’s COVID-19 vaccination roll-out process expanded to include eligible citizens above 60 years of age and 45 to 59 years with specified co-morbidities.
Frequently Asked Questions
A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.
There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.
Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.