India set to roll out two desi Covid vaccines | India News

PUNE: A top central official has said that India is set to introduce a new vaccine that can later be added as a booster to boost protection against Covid-19. Doctor NK Arorapresident of National Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (NTAGI), told TOI on Tuesday that two new vaccines “made in India” will soon be available on CoWIN – an mRNA injection and an intranasal vaccine.
“The Indian mRNA shot is the only one in its category that can be stored and transported at 2-8°C. Similarly, intranasal vaccines are easier to administer. These vaccines can be given as primary doses, and when we have enough data, they can also be included as heterogeneous boosters,” said Dr.
About deaths related to Covid Dr Arora said the current deaths were mainly among people hospitalized with underlying medical conditions such as chronic heart disease, kidney disease, cancer and lung disease.
“Basically, these people were hospitalized for another illness but then tested positive for Covid. Covid causing severe illness is rare, mainly occurring in people with underlying diseases,” he said.
According to different schedules, people who took two doses Covishield or Covaxin has the option of getting another vaccine as a third shot.
However, Dr Arora said enhanced coverage needs to be improved in the country. “People should take a booster dose to increase the drop in antibody levels, especially if the two main doses were taken more than six months ago. There’s still a large percentage of people who haven’t taken the precautionary dose,” he said, adding that data has shown that nearly 90% of people hospitalized with Covid recently haven’t been on boosters.
“Most of these patients also have underlying medical conditions,” he said.
Dr Arora also gave her opinion on the recent statement by WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus that “the end of the pandemic is in sight”. The NTAGI director said the epidemic in India has really turned into a common flu, with no new variants associated with severe illness detected for more than nine months now. He said that Omicron Sub-variants have emerged, but hospitalizations and deaths continue to be low.
More importantly, he added that India is moving towards a point where people can go back to their normal routine.
However, he advised people to continue taking precautions. “Covid is still very much around us and we must continue to be cautious, at least for a while longer,” he said.

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