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Maharashtra gets 9.83 lakh vaccine doses against 17.5 lakh: Rajesh Tope

The state has received only 9.63 vials of Covishield vaccine from the Serum Institute of India and merely 20,000 vials from the Bharat Biotech of its indigenously-made vaccine, Tope told reporters.

January 13, 2021 / 12:23 PM IST
India's vaccination programme is set to begin from January 16 (Representative Image)

India's vaccination programme is set to begin from January 16 (Representative Image)

Maharashtra goverment has so far received 9.83 lakh doses of COVID-19 vaccines out of the total requirement of 17.5 lakh for inoculation in the first phase, state Health Minister Rajesh Tope said on Wednesday.

The state has received only 9.63 vials of Covishield vaccine from the Serum Institute of India and merely 20,000 vials from the Bharat Biotech of its indigenously-made vaccine, Tope told reporters.

"We have to give the doses twice to a person in a gap of four weeks, hence 55 per cent of the around eight lakh registered health workers will undergo vaccination as of now," he said.

"The need of vials for Maharashtra is 17.50 lakh for the first phase. We need slightly more vials because 10 per cent wastage is expected. But, we have received 9.63 lakh vials from the Serum Institute of India," he said.

Besides, the state has received 20,000 vials of the Bharat Biotech's Covaxin, he said.

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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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Tope also informed that the Centre has asked the state to reduce the number of inoculation centers from 511 to 350, saying the government should focus on other emergencies also.

"If we go ahead with 350 centres and 100 people are inoculated at each centre, the state will be able to vaccinate 35,000 health workers on the first day of the vaccination on January 16," he said.

Maharashtra on Tuesday reported 2,936 new COVID-19 cases, taking the tally of infections to 19,74,488.

The cumulative COVID-19 death toll in the state has reached 50,151, as per official figures.
PTI
first published: Jan 13, 2021 12:14 pm

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