The cumulative number of COVID-19 vaccine doses administered in the country crossed 194.90 crore on Friday, the Union Health Ministry said. Over 13 lakh vaccine doses have been administered till 7 pm on Friday, it said.
The daily vaccination tally is expected to increase with the compilation of the final reports for the day by late night. A total of 91,109 precaution doses of COVID-19 vaccine were administered to those aged 18-59 years till 7 pm on Friday, taking the total precaution doses given in this age-group to 31,47,537 so far, according to the Health Ministry data.
So far over 3.50 crore children in the age group of 12-14 years and more than 5.98 crore adolescents in the age group 15-18 years have been administered the first dose. The countrywide vaccination drive was rolled out on January 16 last year with healthcare workers getting inoculated in the first phase. Vaccination of frontline workers started from February 2 last year.
The next phase of COVID-19 vaccination commenced on March 1 last year for people over 60 years of age and those aged 45 and above with specified comorbid conditions. Vaccination for all people aged more than 45 years began on April 1 last year. The government then decided to expand the ambit of the vaccination drive by allowing everyone above 18 years to be inoculated against Covid from May 1 last year. Vaccination for all people aged more than 45 years began on April 1 last year.
Inoculation of adolescents in the age group of 15-18 years commenced on January 3. India began administering precaution doses of vaccines to healthcare and frontline workers and those aged 60 and above with comorbidities from January 10.
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 country began inoculating children aged 12-14 from March 16 and also removed the comorbidity clause making all people aged above 60 eligible for the precaution dose of Covid vaccine. India on April 10 began administering precaution doses of COVID-19 vaccines to all aged above 18 years.