The Centre has asked states and union territories to initiate legal or administrative action against institutions which are giving package for COVID vaccination in collaboration with hotels in violation of prescribed guidelines.
In a letter to all states and UTs, Additional Secretary to Health ministry Manohar Agnani said it has come to the notice of the Union health ministry that some private hospitals are giving package for COVID vaccination in collaboration with some hotels, which is against the guidelines issued for the National COVID Vaccination Program.
Apart from government COVID vaccination centre and private COVID vaccination centre, workplace, near home COVID vaccination centre for elderly and differently-abled persons to be organised at group housing societies, there are no other avenues to carry out vaccination under the national COVID Vaccination Program so vaccination carried out in star hotels is contrary to the guidelines and must be stopped immediately, Agnani was quoted as saying in the letter.
"Necessary legal and administrative actions should be initiated against such institutions. Therefore, you are also requested to monitor and ensure that National COVID Vaccination drive is carried out as per the prescribed guidelines," he added.
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.