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COVID-19 'breakthrough' cases on rise in Kerala, over 40,000 vaccinated persons infected: Reports

Around 20,000 of the total breakthrough infections in Kerala has been reported in Pathanamthitta district.

August 11, 2021 / 07:23 PM IST
Kerala is one of the states worst hit by COVID-19 in India (Representative image)

Kerala is one of the states worst hit by COVID-19 in India (Representative image)

COVID-19 cases among vaccinated persons, also referred to as 'breakthrough infections', is on the rise in Kerala with over 40,000 such cases being recorded in the state, reports said on August 11.

While an official update on breakthrough infections was awaited, NDTV learnt from a top official in the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare that over 40,000 people in Kerala, who had received the vaccine against coronavirus, have been infected.

Around 20,000 of the total breakthrough infections in the state has been reported in one district - Pathanamthitta, where 14,974 persons got infected despite taking a single dose of the vaccine and 5,042 infections were recorded in those vaccinated with both shots.

The numbers have alarmed the central authorities, who have reportedly asked the Kerala government to send samples of breakthrough cases for genome sequencing.

The officials are yet to conclude whether the breakthrough infections have been triggered due to the Delta variant of coronavirus.

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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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Also Read | 80% of Indian’s breakthrough infections during COVID-19 second wave were due to Delta variant: ICMR study

SK Singh, director of the National Centre for Disease Control, told The New Indian Express that the Centre has asked the Kerala government to provide specific details about the breakthrough cases, including severity of infection and the rates of hospitalisation and fatality.

"We are hoping to receive this data in a day or two and should be able to analyse it in a more meaningful way," the newspaper quoted Singh as saying on August 10.

Notably, Kerala also accounts for nearly half the per-day count of cases being recorded in India over the past few days. While the country reported 38,353 new cases on August 11, Kerala has reported 21,119 fresh cases as per the latest update.

The state, with 1,71,990 active cases, also accounts for 44 percent of the country's active caseload which stands at 3,86,351.
Moneycontrol News
first published: Aug 11, 2021 07:23 pm

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