New Delhi [India], August 17 (ANI): With the country still reporting nearly 10,000 COVID cases daily, Dr VK Paul, Member (Health), NITI Aayog on Wednesday said that the pandemic is still not over while also urging the citizens to increase the rate of vaccination of the precaution dose among the population.
Speaking on the slowness of vaccination rate for precaution dose, Dr Paul highlighted the slow rate of vaccination which has picked up lately, and said that there no dearth of vaccine availability and hence the eligible persons should get themselves vaccinated with the precaution doses.
"We need to protect ourselves and need to take precaution dose. Those who have taken a second dose and exceeded 6 months should take the precautionary dose soon. It was said there was slowness in the starting but in 75 days to Amrit Mahotsav, there has been an improvement in inoculation rate and it is satisfactory," he said while speaking to ANI.
The official also presented the comparative data between the rate of inoculation earlier and in the last month.
"It was 8 per cent of precaution dose vaccination rate and now it has reached 17 per cent at present within a month but this speed needs to increase. There is no dearth of vaccines and eligible beneficiaries should go to the vaccination centre. COVID is still around and you are only covered when you take precaution dose," he said.
Dr Paul also cited the availability of three vaccines as precaution dose which includes Covaxin, Covishield and recently inducted Corbevax.
Expressing his observation on the recent trajectory of COVID cases in the country, he said, "Cases are around 16,000 and testing norms are there and we are only testing close contact when they have symptoms. We are also reporting deaths and serious cases are also witnessed, although not as serious as they used to be in previous waves. Comorbidity patients could have a serious impact but the solution is precaution dose and when someone has taken precaution jab, then mortality and serious impact are reduced significantly."
Dr Paul added that research on vaccines is still going on. He also informed that the intranasal vaccine is in advanced stage and work on the mRNA vaccine is also progressing.
"mRNA vaccine is also being worked on, intranasal vaccine is in advanced stage and people are also talking about Omicron specific vaccine should be made. These moves should be continued and we all have the capability. Research is going on," he said. (ANI)