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Australia mulls ban on flights from India, may send emergency supplies: Report

Countries such as the UK, Hong Kong, Canada, Italy, and Singapore have already banned the entry of travellers from India, while the US and Germany have issued advisories.

April 26, 2021 / 01:06 PM IST
Australia might ban flights from India (Representational image)

Australia might ban flights from India (Representational image)

The Australian government will consider banning flights from India and will likely send emergency medical supplies as a ferocious second wave of coronavirus shows no signs of abating.

The National Security Committee of Cabinet will on April 27 discuss temporarily halting all repatriation flights out of India, Australian daily The Sydney Morning Herald reported.  Suspension of flights will impact Australians in India, including cricketers in the Indian Premier League (IPL).

The second COVID-19 wave has seen India report record high cases day after day, triggering a shortage of hospital beds, medical oxygen and medicines. As many as 3,52,991 new cases were reported on April 26, the fifth consecutive day that daily infections stayed above three lakh.

Also read: Covid explosion | It's a rerun of 2020 as countries suspend air services with India, domestic tourists stay home

Australia will likely send oxygen, ventilators and personal protective equipment (PPE) to India to help the country.

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How does a vaccine work?

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.

How many types of vaccines are there?

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.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

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.

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Countries such as the UK, Hong Kong, Canada, Italy, and Singapore have already banned the entry of travellers from India, while the US and Germany have issued advisories. Maldives and Bangladesh, too, have barred travellers from India.

Many countries, such as the US, the UK, France and Pakistan have expressed support for India. The US said it will send raw materials for COVID-19 vaccines, medical equipment and PPE to India.

Follow our LIVE blog for updates on the COVID-19 pandemic

 
Moneycontrol News
first published: Apr 26, 2021 01:06 pm

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