The booster shot of the Covid-19 vaccine is not the central theme in scientific and public health discussion at the moment, said the central government on Thursday. Instead, the administration of the two doses remains the main priority.
“We need to remember one thing very clearly that booster dose is not the central theme at the moment in the scientific discussion as well as in the public health domain. Getting the two doses remains the major priority,” said ICMR director general Balram Bhargava.
“Several agencies have recommended that antibody levels should not be measured. But the important understanding is that full vaccination of both doses is absolutely essential and there should be no breakage in that,” he added.
Speaking at a press briefing, Union health secretary Rajesh Bhushan said 20% of India’s adult population has been fully vaccinated and 62% has received at least one dose of the vaccine. In addition to this, 99% of the healthcare workers have received the first dose while 82% have taken the second dose.
Bhushan further said that 100% of the frontline workers have been administered the first dose while 78% of them have been given the second dose.
So far, all adults in five states and union territories — Sikkim, Himachal Pradesh, Goa, Chandigarh and Lakshadweep — have received at least one dose of the vaccine.
According to data, the average daily doses administered in a month has increased from 19.69 lakh in May to 39.89 lakh in June, then further to 43.41 lakh in July and to 59.19 lakh in August.
The average daily vaccination in the first 15 days of September has been 74.40 lakh per day, Bhushan said.
Further, almost 68% of the total Covid-19 cases reported in India are from Kerala.
“Almost 68% of the total cases reported nationally are from Kerala. Kerala has over 1.99 lakh active cases, while five other states — Mizoram, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra — have more than 10,000 active cases,” Bhushan said.
“The weekly positivity rate for the last 11 weeks is below 3%. 64 districts are still reporting above 5% Covid positivity. They are districts of concern where Covid appropriate behaviour, vaccination, surveillance in these areas must be strictly monitored,” he added.
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