As the second wave of COVID-19 continues unabated, testing and vaccination in Delhi have dropped to a two-week low.
Testing in the national capital touched a two-week low of 57,690 samples on April 26, a drop from 1.08 lakh tests conducted on April 14.
On April 27, 73,811 tests were conducted and over 57,000 beneficiaries were vaccinated.
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.
The Economic Times reported that the proportion of RT-PCR tests, considered more accurate, has fallen in Delhi. The Centre has directed that at least 70 percent of tests conducted daily should be RT-PCR tests.
Over the past two weeks, Delhi crossed the 70 percent RT-PCR mark only twice — 71.94 percent on April 15 and 75.83 percent on April 19, according to calculations done by the publication."Overall the testing capacity has taken a hit due to a lack of manpower, especially data entry operators and sample collection technicians. The government must ease certain protocols," said Chetan Kohli, COO, Genestrings Diagnostic Centre told The Economic Times.