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Biocon chief Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw compares COVID vaccination situation in India to arranged marriage

Earlier this week, Mazumdar-Shaw had expressed concern over shortage of COVID-19 vaccines and sought better transparency from the government regarding their availability so that citizens could patiently wait for their turn.

May 15, 2021 / 06:09 PM IST
Biocon Chairperson Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw

Biocon Chairperson Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw

 
 
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Biocon chief Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw has compared the COVID-19 vaccination situation in the country to an arranged marriage. Mazumdar-Shaw, the executive chairperson of biotechnology major Biocon, in a lighter vein compared the two while bringing out the confusion that currently prevails regarding the entire vaccination process.

"The vaccine situation in India is like arranged marriage. First u r not ready, then u don't like any, then u don't get any!! Those who got are unhappy thinking may be the other one would have been better. Those who did not get any are willing to get any one," Mazumdar-Shaw tweeted on Saturday.

Earlier this week, Mazumdar-Shaw had expressed concern over shortage of COVID-19 vaccines and sought better transparency from the government regarding their availability so that citizens could patiently wait for their turn.

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"Very concerned about why vaccines are in such short supply. Can we please know where the 70 million doses are being deployed every month? @MoHFW_INDIA We need better transparency to avoid the suspense. If a timetable of supplies is made public people can patiently wait their turn," Mazumdar-Shaw had tweeted while tagging the Health Ministry.

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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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India has announced expansion of its COVID-19 vaccination drive by allowing its large population aged over 18 to get inoculated from May 1.

Various states including Delhi, have complained about lack of vaccines and questioned the Centre's policy in dealing with the situation.

While the vaccine manufacturers continue to produce and dispatch lots, there remains a huge gap between demand and supply of the critical medication.

As per Health Ministry data, the cumulative number of COVID-19 vaccine doses administered in the country has crossed 18 crore mark.

The ministry said 42,58,756 beneficiaries in the 18-45 age group have taken the first dose since the start of phase-3 of the vaccination drive against COVID-19 with 3,28,216 beneficiaries receiving their first dose in the last 24 hours.

In the 45-60 age group, 5,68,05,772 people have received their first dose while 87,56,313 beneficiaries have got their second dose, and among beneficiaries above 60 years of age, 5,43,17,646 have got their first dose while 1,75,53,918 have taken their second dose.

Follow our full coverage of the coronavirus pandemic here.
PTI
first published: May 15, 2021 06:09 pm

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