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States or beneficiaries can choose between Covaxin & Covishield? Here's what Health Sec Rajesh Bhushan said English.Lokmat.com

States or beneficiaries can choose between Covaxin & Covishield? Here's what Health Sec Rajesh Bhushan said

On January 3, two vaccines Bharat Biotech's Covaxin and Oxford-AstraZeneca's Covishield manufactured by the Serum Institute of India were ...
States or beneficiaries can choose between Covaxin & Covishield? Here's what Health Sec Rajesh Bhushan said

On January 3, two vaccines Bharat Biotech's Covaxin and Oxford-AstraZeneca's Covishield manufactured by the Serum Institute of India were approved for 'restricted emergency use'. Few more vaccines are in the pipeline and are conducting trials.

Vaccines have already reached some states from the Serum Institute in Pune. The much-awaited Covid-19 vaccination drive will kick-off on January 16. The Central government plans to vaccinate nearly 30 crore people in the first phase of the drive. Priority will be given to the healthcare and frontline workers who are estimated to be around three crore, followed by those above 50 years of age and the under-50 population with comorbidities numbering around 27 crore.

Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan was asked at a press conference today whether the beneficiaries would have the option to choose between Covishield and Covaxin vaccine and whether they would have the freedom to choose one of the two vaccines. 

In many countries, more than one vaccine is being used. There is no such option available to any of the beneficiaries in these countries, replied Rajesh Bhushan. 

'More than one vaccine is being used in many countries. However, the beneficiary has not been given such an option there, 'said Bhushan. Therefore, there is a strong possibility that the beneficiary will not be able to choose the vaccine even in India.

Both the vaccines (Covishield & Covaxin) have been authorized for emergency use & there should be no doubt about their safety. They have been tested on thousands of people & side-effects are negligible. There is no risk of any significance, said Dr VK Paul, Member (Health), NITI Aayog. The Indian Medical Association (IMA) has decided to accept & support the two indigenously developed vaccines (Covishield & Covaxin). I would like to thank them for this, he added.



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