More than 1.45 crore COVID-19 vaccine doses are still available with states and union territories and over 19,10,650 jabs are in the pipeline and will be received by them within the next three days, the Union Health Ministry said on Saturday.
The states and union territories have so far got over 31.17 crore vaccine doses through the free-of-cost channel of the central government and direct procurement.
Of these, the total consumption, including wastage, has been 29,71,80,733 doses, the ministry said.
"More than 1.45 crore (1,45,21,067) balance and unutilised Covid vaccine doses are still available with the states/UTs to be administered," the ministry said.
"Furthermore, more than 19,10,650 vaccine doses are in the pipeline and will be received by the states/UTs within the next 3 days," the ministry said.
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.