Covid-19 vaccine with syringe and Indian flag image in the background-selective focus

Covid-19: Vaccination and the mobile application.

 

 

The first phase of the COVID-19 vaccination will inoculate 30 crore people from priority groups. This includes 3 crore healthcare and frontline workers, along with 27 crore people above 50 years of age and the under-50 population groups with co-morbidities. India has approved two COVID-19 vaccines – Oxford AstraZeneca’s Covishield and Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin – for emergency use.

PM Modi called it a “landmark step towards fighting COVID-19” and he also stated “On January 16, India takes a huge step forward in fighting COVID-19 as the nation-wide vaccination drive begins. Priority will be given to our brave doctors, healthcare workers and frontline workers including Safai Karamcharis,”

The health ministry stated that “The vaccination exercise is underpinned by the principles of people’s participation (Jan Bhagidari); utilizing the experience of elections (booth strategy) and Universal Immunization Program (UIP); no compromise of existing healthcare services, especially national programs and primary health care; no compromise on scientific and regulatory norms, other SOPs; and an orderly and smooth implementation driven by technology,”

Co-WIN Vaccine Delivery Management System/ digital platform will provide real-time information of vaccine stocks, their storage temperature and individualised tracking of beneficiaries of the COVID-19 vaccine.

The platform has been built to assist programme managers across all levels through automated session allocation for pre-registered beneficiaries, their verification and for generating a digital certificate upon successful completion of the vaccine schedule. More than 79 lakh beneficiaries have already been registered on the platform.

The training process for vaccinators and vaccine administrators was also mentioned in detail during the meeting. During national level Training of Trainers, 2,360 participants were trained including state immunisation officers, cold chain officers, IEC officials, development partners, etc. More than 61,000 programme managers, 2 lakh vaccinators and 3.7 lakh other vaccination team members have been trained so far as part of training at states, districts and block levels.

 

vaccine side effects

The Covid-19 Vaccines are released, but not without side effects.

With the vaccine being distributed in India frontline health workers, over 2 lakh people have been inoculated till day 3. Though a vaccine for Covid-19 means good news, there have already been multiple reports of people experiencing side effects.

According to the Health Ministry, there have been 580 cases with side effects reported on 16th and 17th January, with seven hospitalized and two pronounced dead. The government said that, for the 52-year-old ward boy, who died in UP after receiving the vaccine, the death is not linked to the vaccination as he died due to cardiopulmonary disease as revealed by the post – mortem. The government plans to do a post – mortem in the second case of the 43-year-old man from Karnataka to determine the reason for his death.

On Day 1 of the vaccination, 52 cases of AEFI (Adverse Events Following Immunisation) were reported from Delhi, but only one was severe. On Day 1, Maharashtra reported 14 cases of side effects, as reported by Mint. Due to technical glitches in the Covin App, the vaccination drive had been put on hold in the state. However, the drive is expected to begin again on 19th January after resolving all the glitches.

Two vaccines are being released in India, Covishield and Covaxin. All three trials for Covishield have been completed as per protocol. However, Covaxin is still undergoing stage – III trials, making critics and experts skeptical about the vaccination’s side effects and efficacy. People receiving Covaxin also have to sign a consent form for “clinical trial mode,” implying that the trials are not yet over and the beneficiaries are a part of the clinical trial. The document also says that the beneficiaries will be compensated in case of adverse effects from the vaccine.

Along with India, many other parts of the world have fallen prey to side effects from the vaccine. In Israel, 13 people suffered mild facial paralysis after receiving the vaccine, while in Norway, 29 people have died after being inoculated with the Pfizer vaccine. The Norwegian Medicines Agency said that all the people who died were senior citizens suffering from “serious basic disorders” while others suffered other adverse reactions like nausea and vomiting. Norwegian officials have said that the vaccine trials may be too risky for the elderly and terminally ill patients.

As there have been side effects of the Covid-19 vaccines, it is too early to comment if these vaccines are fruitful in the long run and to determine the actual efficacy of these vaccines. We will have to wait and see if these vaccines provide us with a solution from Covid-19 without causing much harm to its beneficiaries.