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Russian President Vladimir Putin gets second dose of coronavirus vaccine

The 68-year-old President received his first dose on March 23 in private, declining to say which of Russia's three vaccines -- Sputnik V, EpiVacCorona or CoviVac -- he had been administered.

April 14, 2021 / 04:40 PM IST
Russian President Vladimir Putin | Source: AP

Russian President Vladimir Putin | Source: AP

President Vladimir Putin said Wednesday he had received the second dose of a vaccine against the coronavirus and encouraged Russians to follow his example.

"I want to inform you that right now, before entering this room, I also received the second vaccination," he said during a televised meeting.

"I assume that you, taking care of yourself and your loved ones, will do the same and follow my example," he added.

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The 68-year-old received his first dose on March 23 in private, declining to say which of Russia's three vaccines -- Sputnik V, EpiVacCorona or CoviVac -- he had been administered.

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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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In late March he called on Russians to get inoculated against the coronavirus, saying the country would be able to end all measures to limit the spread of the virus when around 70 percent of adults had been vaccinated.

He predicted that would happen by the end of the summer.

At the time he said that some 6.3 million of the country's 144 million people had received a first dose of a vaccine.

Despite beginning its vaccination campaign in early December ahead of most countries, Russia has struggled to inoculate its citizens.

Many Russians are sceptical of the vaccine, with a recent opinion poll showing fewer than a third are willing to get inoculated.

Although Russia has been among the hardest hit by Covid-19, it has lifted nearly all of its pandemic restrictions, with health officials saying the worst of the country's outbreak passed over the winter.

But infections in Moscow, the epicentre of Russia's outbreak, have begun climbing again recently, and authorities on Monday suspended most flights with Turkey citing rising cases there.

As of Wednesday, health officials had reported more than 4.6 million infections and 104,000 fatalities from the virus.

Follow our full coverage of the coronavirus pandemic here.
AFP
first published: Apr 14, 2021 04:31 pm

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