BJP workers to aid covid vaccination drive on PM’s birthday on Sep 17

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) workers across the country will run a special campaign on PM’s birthday on September 17 to help maximum people get covid vaccination. The BJP workers aim to break all previous records of vaccination. Announcing the campaign from his residence, BJP president JP Nadda said party workers at booth level across the country will help people get vaccinated on the day. Also, talking about the party’s health volunteers’ campaign, Nadda said the BJP had pledged to train 4 lakh volunteers in 2 lakh villages to support the healthcare system. So far, the party has trained 6.88 lakh volunteers in 43 days and hopes to touch 8 lakh very soon, he said.

Data on national covid vaccination

The Union Health Ministry has released the data of the national vaccination drive that showed the Covid-19 vaccines being administered in the country offer near-total protection against serious disease and death.

Kerala on Thursday reported 26,200 new Covid-19 cases along with 125  deaths. The test positivity rate in the state was recorded at 16.69 per cent. With this, the total infections in the state rose to 43,09,694 and the fatalities till now to 22,126. 29,209 people recovered from the infection taking the total number to 40,50,665 and the number of active cases to 2,36,345, the state government said in press release.

Meanwhile, ICMR DG Dr Balram Bhargava  on Thursday said that Covid-19 vaccine is 96.6 per cent effective in preventing death after first dose while it prevents death by 97.5 per cent after second dose.

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Earlier in the day, India reported 43,263 new coronavirus cases and 338 deaths in the last 24 hours ending at 8 AM on Thursday. With this, the country’s tally of cases rose to 3.31 crore (3,31,39,981), while the death toll increased to 4.41 lakh (4,41,749). Over 40,000 (40,567) patients recovered from coronavirus, taking the active number of cases to 3.91 lakh (3,93,614).

The cumulative Covid vaccination doses administered in India crossed 72 crore on Thursday.

What does the data reveal?

On Thursday, ICMR DG Dr Balram Bhargava released the preliminary data of the soon-to-be-launched vaccine tracker that has been synergised using the Cowin platform and the national Covid-19 testing database of the ICMR.

The real-time data of the Covid vaccination between April 18 and August 15, showed that the Covid vaccination effectiveness in preventing mortality after the first dose stood at 96.6 per cent; and it further enhanced after the second dose – and stood at an impressive 97.5 per cent.

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First, the data reaffirms that the eligible adult population, especially the vulnerable population, as well those with associated co-morbidities like diabetes, hypertension and cardiovascular disease should, on priority, get themselves vaccinated. The data is clear evidence that across all age groups – both Covishield and Covaxin – protect persons from both severe disease and death. Therefore, to significantly reduce the risk of death associated with the Covid-19, it is imperative for the entire adult population to get themselves vaccinated. The covid vaccination will help the adult population.

From a public health perspective, the data clearly shows that higher vaccination coverage at the district level would mean significantly lesser hospitalisations. This would in turn ensure that the hospitals are not overwhelmed and that those with severe disease will be able to receive quality treatment.

As seen during the peak of ferocious second wave, as a significantly high percentage of the population was unvaccinated, the hospital infrastructure was overwhelmed.

Now, since 58 per cent of the eligible adult population in the country have received the first dose, and 18 per cent is fully vaccinated — and with vaccines offering high protection in preventing mortality — it is very likely that hospitals will not be overburdened with cases of severe infections at the levels recorded during the second wave, especially in districts with high vaccination coverage.

No. Thursday’s data released by the health ministry only related Covid vaccination effectiveness in preventing mortality. The data does not show how many persons were infected post-vaccination.

Significantly, on Thursday, Dr Bhargava flagged that the Covid-19 vaccines are disease-modifying vaccines and not disease-preventing vaccines. So breakthrough infections will occur even after covid vaccination. That is why the government continues to recommend that strict use of masks and Covid-19 appropriate behaviour to break the chain of transmission.

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