India is witnessing a second wave of COVID-19 pandemic, which has completely overwhelmed the country’s medical infrastructure as demands growing up for medical oxygen, hospital beds and other life-saving supplies.
The cases are surging even as the world’s largest COVID-19 vaccination drive is underway with over 14.52 crore people have been vaccinated so far, according to the Union Health Ministry's report.
Amid the rising coronavirus infection, many states and districts have announced restrictions, like lockdown, night curfew and limitation on public gathering, among others to prevent the transmission.
From Rajasthan to UP, Bihar: All you need to know about cities, states under lockdown, curfew
As the second wave of COVID-19 is ravaging the country, it is important to understand when the chances of being exposed increase. According to US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the chances of being exposed to novel coronavirus infection increase when one goes out of the house. It included leaving the house for work, to run errands, or for any other reason. A person, out of the home may contract the virus and bring it back to home.
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.
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Here are the chances of a person being exposed to COVID-19 increase, when a person:
> has close contact with other people. This means getting closer than six feet with others.
> spends more time with other people
> spends time in crowds, which means a gathering of more than 10 people
> spends time in indoor spaces, particularly if poorly ventilated
To save from getting infected outside the home, wear a mask, wash hands frequently, and stay at least six feet apart from people to protect yourself and prevent bringing COVID-19 into your home, advises CDC.
How to wear a mask?
Here are the few things that should be followed regarding masking up your face:
> Wash your hands before putting on your mask.
> Wear your mask over your nose and mouth and secure it under your chin.
> Fit your mask snugly against the sides of your face.
> Make sure you can breathe easily.
> When you take off your mask, handle it only by the ear loops or ties.
> Store your used mask safely to keep it clean between uses.
> Wash your cloth mask regularly, preferably in a washing machine.
Follow our full coverage on COVID-19 here.