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Kerala gets first Covishield vaccine consignment

The Go Air flight carrying the vaccine for Ernakulam and Kozhikode landed at the airport at 10.35 am, they said. Special refrigerated vans were arranged to transport the vaccine safely to the respective centres.

January 13, 2021 / 12:11 PM IST
Besides Delhi, the vaccines will be dispatched to 12 other locations across the country in seven more flights by 10 am. The locations include Ahmedabad, Chennai, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Karnal, Hyderabad, Vijayawada, Guwahati, Lucknow, Chandigarh and Bhubaneswar. (Image: Spicejet)

Besides Delhi, the vaccines will be dispatched to 12 other locations across the country in seven more flights by 10 am. The locations include Ahmedabad, Chennai, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Karnal, Hyderabad, Vijayawada, Guwahati, Lucknow, Chandigarh and Bhubaneswar. (Image: Spicejet)

The first consignment of Covidshield vaccine from Pune-based Serum Insititute of India arrived at the Cochin international airport here on Wednesday morning to combat COVID-19, official sources said.

The Go Air flight carrying the vaccine for Ernakulam and Kozhikode landed at the airport at 10.35 am, they said. Special refrigerated vans were arranged to transport the vaccine safely to the respective centres.

Transfer of vaccine boxes from the plane to vans was completed in 10 minutes, they said. The second flight carrying the vaccine is expected to reach Thiruvananthapuram international airport this afternoon.

National Health Mission sources said of the 4.33 lakh doses of the vaccine, 1,100 would be sent to Mahe, which is an enclave of Puducherry and lies between Kozhikode and Kannur districts.

The vaccine will be stored in the Regional vaccine centres at Kochi, Thiruvananthapuram and Kozhikode from where it would be distributed to 133 centres across the state.

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COVID-19 Vaccine

Frequently Asked Questions

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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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While Thiruvananthapuram will receive 1,34,000 doses of the vaccine, Ernakulam and Kozhikode will receive 1,80,000 and 1,19,500 doses respectively, Health Minister K K Shailaja has said. So far, 3,62,870 people have registered themselves for the vaccination,which will commence from January 16.
PTI
first published: Jan 13, 2021 11:58 am

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