India could have probably reached this grand milestone earlier if precious time was not wasted by asking States to procure vaccines directly from the two manufacturers at a higher cost to vaccinate the 18-44 age group. India scripted history on October 21 when the number of COVID-19 vaccine doses administered across the country crossed the … Continue reading India scripts history with one billion vaccine doses administered
In the revised vaccine policy of June 7, private hospitals can continue to procure 25% of vaccines produced by the two manufacturers at a far higher price. This goes against the grain of the universal free vaccination to achieve vaccine equity. Vaccine procurement should ideally be 100% by the government and provided through public and … Continue reading Amidst shortage, allotting 25% of vaccines produced to private hospitals will aggravate vaccine inequity
The unprecedented, hare-brained policy that requires States to buy vaccines, and at a far higher price than what the Central government pays, and framed without consulting the States or giving them prior notice, combined with profiteering by vaccine manufacturers in the thick of the pandemic and vaccine shortage will surely exacerbate vaccine inequity. In the … Continue reading India sets a dangerous precedent with COVID-19 vaccination programme
The differential pricing for central and State governments is the sticking point, which is not addressed by Serum in its statement that came after the Health Minister and Health Ministry clarified the price of Rs.150 per dose to the central government. On April 24, Adar Poonawalla, CEO of Serum Institute, issued a statement to address … Continue reading Serum refuses to address differential pricing for Central and State governments
As vaccines are a tool to promote health equity, all attempts should be made to remove any artificial barriers in accessing them particularly during the pandemic and more so when several States are witnessing a surge in cases. Just three weeks after India rolled out the second phase of the mass COVID-19 vaccination programme to … Continue reading Achieving vaccine equity by making comorbidities redundant for those above 45 years
This is the first time a vaccine to be administered outside the universal immunisation programme and specifically for adults is to be rolled out. Since several aspects of the COVID vaccination programme are new, the government has rightly decided to undertake a dry-run for vaccine administration.