Rest of Asia

Covid in India: Over 21k tested positive after taking first dose of vaccine

PTI/New Delhi
Filed on April 21, 2021
A health official draws a dose of AstraZeneca's Covid-19 vaccine manufactured by the Serum Institute of India. — Reuters

Official says vaccines reduce the risk of infection and prevent death and severe infection

More than 21,000 people in India tested positive for Covid-19 after taking the first dose of either Covishield or Covaxin, while over 5,500 contracted the infection after taking the second dose, the Centre said on Wednesday.

Addressing a Press conference, ICMR director-general Balram Bhargava said 0.04 per cent of 1,737,178 individuals, who received the second dose of Covaxin, were positive for Covid-19, while 0.03 per cent of 15,732,754 people, who took the second dose of Covishield, contracted the infection.

Bhargava who presented the data said vaccines reduce the risk of infection and prevent death and severe infection.

“After vaccination if one gets infection then it is known as breakthrough infection,” he said.

So far, 11 million doses of Covaxin have been administered, out of which 9.3 million received the first dose and out of that 4,208 (0.04 per cent) people got the infection which is four per 10,000 individuals. About 1,737,178 people received the second dose of which only 695 (0.04 per cent) tested positive for Covid-19, Bhargava said.

Of Covishield, 116 million doses have been given. 100 million received the first dose and 17,145 i.e. 2 per 10,000 people contracted the infection. About 15,732,754 individuals took the second dose of Covishield and of that 5,014 (0.03 per cent) got infected. Two to four per 10,000 breakthrough infections have occurred, a very small number. This was mainly healthcare workers prone to more occupational hazards, he said.

According to the data, 5,709 people contracted the infection after the second dose of either of the two vaccines.

“This is a very small number and not at all worrisome. Secondly, the highly transmissible second wave also contribute miniscule to the percentage so this could have been even zero per cent,” he said.

NITI Aayog Member (Health) V K Paul noted that there is a risk even after taking vaccination so “we stress people to follow Covid-appropriate behaviour even after taking the vaccination”.

Amid oxygen shortage in the country, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan said that 7,500 metric tonnes of oxygen is being produced in the country per day and 6,600 metric tonnes is being supplied to the states for medical use.

“Presently, we have issued instructions that, leaving a few industries, the supply of industries will be restricted so that more and more oxygen can be made available for medical use. We have allocated 6,600 MT out of 7,500 MT to states,” he said.

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