Coronavirus updates | January 12, 2021

First consignment of COVID-19 vaccination arrives at Delhi Airport in a special SpiceJet flight from Pune, in New Delhi, Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021.   | Photo Credit: PTI

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday announced that the State governments would not have to pay for vaccinating the priority group of three crore healthcare and frontline workers, stating that the Centre would bear the cost.

The announcement came as the Central government placed a purchase order with the Pune-based Serum Institute of India (SII) for 11 million doses of Oxford COVID-19 vaccine, Covishield, at a cost of ₹210 per dose (including GST).

You can track coronavirus cases, deaths and testing rates at the national and State levels here. A list of State Helpline numbers is available as well.

Here are live updates:

 

Both vaccines are safe: V.K. Paul

Both the authorised vaccines are safe, there should not be any doubt. They are the safest vaccines, they have been tested on thousands of people, the side effects are negligible, says Member (Health) Niti Aayog V.K. Paul.

All the vaccines in the world are being used under the emergency-use framework, as we go ahead we will have more options, says Dr. Paul.

Responding to a query, Health Secretary indicates that people will not have the option of making a choice between the two available vaccines.

 

How will the vaccines be distributed?

As part of the sequential roll-out, the vaccination of about 1 crore health workers will begin on January 16, followed by two crore frontline workers, and then the about 27 crore people of above 50 years and those below this age limit  with comorbidities, says Health Secretary Rajeev Bhushan.

The cost of vaccination of health care and frontline workers will be borne by the Central government.

Vaccines will first reach four major stores in Karnal, Kolkata, Chennai and Mumbai. All States have at least one State-level regional vaccine store, Uttar Pradesh has nine, Madhya Pradesh has four, Gujarat has four, Kerala has three, J&K has two, Karnataka has two and Rajasthan has two stores.

54.72 lakh doses have already been received till 4 p.m. today, 100% doses will be received by Jan 14 in all States/UTs.

The States will ensure all logistics will be ready by January 16. There should be continuous oversight and personal involvement on the entire process of roll-out, there should be special focus on communication activities & utilisation of all types of channels to create an encouraging environment. This is the responsibility of the STates.

There is a gap of 28 days between two doses; the effectiveness begins in 14 days after the second dose. Therefore, Covid appropriate behaviour is a must, says Mr. Bhushan

 

India procured vaccines vs. others

At the weekly media briefing on COVID-19, Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan says the cost of 38.5 lakh doses of Covaxin is Rs.295 per dose (excluding taxes), BBIL is providing 16.5 lakh doses of Covaxin free of cost to the Central government. Therefore, the cost of Covaxin is Rs.206 per dose.

Here is how other vaccines are priced:

  • Pfizer-BioNTech is available for $19.50 per dose (Rs.1,431), it has to be stored at -70 degree (excluding the overhead costs).
  • Moderna is available for Rs.2,348-Rs.2,715, has to be stored at 2 to 8 degrees
  • Sinopharm is available for more than Rs.5,650 per dose, has to be stored at 2 to 8 degree
  • Sinovac Biotech vaccine is available for Rs.1,027 per dose, has to be stored at 2 to 8 degree
  • Novavax vaccine is available for Rs.1,114 per dose and has to be stored at 2 to 8 degree
  •  Sputnik V vaccine is available for about Rs.734 per dose (in other countries), has to be stored at 2 to 8 degree
  • The vaccine by J&J is also available for about Rs.734 and has to be stored at 2 to 8 degree

The preparations for vaccination in coordination with the States/UTs are under way for roll-out from January 16.

26  virtual meetings/trainings were held with States/UTs. As many as 2,360 master trainers have been trained. 61,000 programme managers, two lakh vaccinators, 3.7 lakh other vaccination team members have also been trained so far.

 

Status of vaccine development in India

To promote indigenous R&D in vaccines, pharmaceuticals and diagnostics, a task force headed by Principal Scientific Advisor was set up in May. To address vaccine procurement, logistics, prioritisation of population groups, NEGVAC headed by Member (Health) Niti Aayog and Health Secretary was set up in August.

Two COVID-19 vaccines have now received Emergency Use Authorisation, both the vaccines have established safety and immunogenicity through a well prescribed regulatory process, says the Health Secretary

Possible timelines of other vaccines under trials in India:

1. Zydus Cadila, its Phase-II trials were complete in December last, the third stage trials beginning this month.

2. Sputnik V's Phase-II/III trials are under way

3. Biological E, the Phase-I trials started in December last. The Phase-II trials may begin in March

4. Gennova, Phase-I trials approved. Phase-II trials for Gennova may begin in March

COVID briefing

54% active cases from two states: Health Secretary

At the weekly media briefing on COVID-19, Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan says the situation is still worrisome across the world, the graph is climbing in US, UK, Brazil and South Africa.

In India, last 24 hours, 12,584 new cases were reported. However, active cases continue to decline in India and it is now less than 2.2 lakh. Only two States with more than 50,000 cases contribute 54%. In Kerala the number of active cases are 63,547 and in Maharashtra, they are 53,463, he says.

Only 44% of the active cases are in hospitals, while the others are in home isolation.

Hyderabad

Bharat Biotech set to dispatch first consignment of Covaxin

Bharat Biotech, which has received Emergency Use Authorisation approval from theDrug Controller General of Indiafor its COVID-19 vaccine Covaxin, is set to dispatch it from the Rajv Gandhi International Airport in Hyderabad on Tuesday evening, a senior official of the Airports cargo division said.

Hyderabad

Telangana Chief Secretary reviews preparations for COVID-19 vaccine administration

Cartons with COVID-19 vaccine vials being unloaded from a deep freezer van at State Vaccine Centre in Telangana Health Campus, Hyderabad on Tuesday.

Cartons with COVID-19 vaccine vials being unloaded from a deep freezer van at State Vaccine Centre in Telangana Health Campus, Hyderabad on Tuesday.   | Photo Credit: Nagara Gopal

 

As the vaccine for COVID-19 started arriving in the State, the Telangana Government has directed the district collectors to take steps to ensure that necessary arrangements were made at the identified launch sites in their respective districts in line with the operational guidelines issued to them. The arrangements should include measures for dealing with any cases of adverse effects on the people following administration of the vaccine.

Chief Secretary Somesh Kumar asked to the collectors to appoint Special Officers for each launch site and entrust them with the responsibility of overseeing the arrangements there. The Chief Secretary held video conference with district collectors on Tuesday to review preparations for Covid-19 vaccination following the instructions issued by Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao at a review meeting on Monday.

Read more
 

Bengaluru

Bengaluru receives first Covishield vaccine consignment of 6.47 lakh doses

The consignment of Covishield received at Bengaluru Airport. Photo: Special Arrangements

The consignment of Covishield received at Bengaluru Airport. Photo: Special Arrangements  

Karnataka on Tuesday finally received its first consignment of COVID-19 vaccine. The consignment comprising 54 boxes of 6.47 lakh doses of Covishield vaccine reached Bengaluru airport by Spicejet airlines around 11.40 a.m.

The vaccine consignment weighing 1,728 kgs was received by a team of officials comprising Bengaluru Urban District Health Officer (DHO) Srinivas Golur and other health department officials in charge of the State vaccine store in Bengaluru.

The consignment was then transported to the State vaccine store on the premises of the Health Department’s old building near Anand Rao circle in a refrigerated vaccine truck.

Read more
 

Chennai

Vaccines reach Chennai

Tamil Nadu Health Secretary J. Radhakrishnan overseeas as COVID-19 vaccines are being unloaded at the Department of Public Health vaccine store at Teynampet in Chennai on Tuesday.

Tamil Nadu Health Secretary J. Radhakrishnan overseeas as COVID-19 vaccines are being unloaded at the Department of Public Health vaccine store at Teynampet in Chennai on Tuesday.   | Photo Credit: Jothi Ramalingam B.

A GoAir flight with Serum Institute's COVISHIELD vaccine arrived at Chennai airport on Tuesday morning.

5.56 lakh vaccine doses have been dispatched from Pune, said Tamil Nadu Health Secretary J Radhakrishnan.

The vaccines will be stored at State vaccine centre in Teynampet, Chennai. They will be distributed further to 10 regional centres & 51 walk-in coolers at district level by today evening. Later, it will go to actual vaccination site in cold boxes, he explained.

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Delhi

COVID-19 vaccines lands in Delhi

A policeman stands guard near container truck carrying the first consignment of vaccines as it prepares to leave for the airport at Serum Institute of India, the world's largest vaccine maker, in Pune, India, Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021.

A policeman stands guard near container truck carrying the first consignment of vaccines as it prepares to leave for the airport at Serum Institute of India, the world's largest vaccine maker, in Pune, India, Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021.   | Photo Credit: AP

 

The first consignment of Covishield vaccines reached Delhi from Pune on Tuesday, four days ahead of the launch of a nationwide drive against the coronavirus.

A SpiceJet flight carrying the vaccines landed at the Delhi airport around 10 am. It had left for the national capital around 8 am, three hours after three trucks with the maiden consignment of the vaccines rolled out of the Serum Institute of India (SII) facility, 15 km from the Pune airport.

Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said four airlines will operate nine flights to transport 56.5 lakh doses of COVID-19 vaccine from Pune to 13 cities across the country on Tuesday.

Vaccine movement has started, he said on Twitter, adding that first two flights operated by "SpiceJet and GoAir from Pune to Delhi and Chennai have taken off".

A 'puja' was performed before the vehicles left the facility.

National

1st consignment of Covishield vaccines leaves Serum Institute

Trucks to be used used to transport COVID-19 vaccines, getting ready to load vaccines for distribution across India, at Serum Institute of India, in Pune.

Trucks to be used used to transport COVID-19 vaccines, getting ready to load vaccines for distribution across India, at Serum Institute of India, in Pune.   | Photo Credit: PTI

 

Three temperature-controlled trucks rolled out of the Serum Institute's gates shortly before 5 am on Tuesday, January 12, 2021 and left for Pune airport, from where the vaccines will be flown across India. The trucks carried 478 boxes of the vaccines, each box weighing 32 kg, a source closely involved in the transport arrangements said.

The trucks left the Serum Institute of India premises at Manjari and reached the airport, located 15 km from the facility.

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Telangana

Schools to open after 315-day COVID break in Telangana

Following Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao’s direction to open schools and colleges from February 1, officials will be meeting on Tuesday to finalise the guidelines and standard operating procedures to be adopted with regard to classes, teaching and exams.

About 26,000 government schools and 11,000 private schools in Telangana will be opened for students of higher classes after a gap of 315 days as the last working day of the previous academic year was March 21.

Read more
 

Hyderabad | Vaccine trials

Dr. Reddy’s seeks DCGI nod for Sputnik-V phase-3 trials

A medical worker demonstrates a vial with Sputnik V (Gam-COVID-Vac) vaccine during the vaccination against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) at a clinic in Minsk, Belarus.

A medical worker demonstrates a vial with Sputnik V (Gam-COVID-Vac) vaccine during the vaccination against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) at a clinic in Minsk, Belarus.   | Photo Credit: Reuters

 

Pharma major Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories on Monday said safety data pertaining to phase-2 clinical trial of Russia’s Sputnik-V COVID-19 vaccine candidate has been submitted to the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) for review seeking approval to continue phase-3 clinical trials.

The company said this referring to a review undertaken by the independent Data and Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB). “The phase 2 study was conducted on 100 subjects as part of the randomized, double-blind, parallel-group, placebo-controlled study in India. The DSMB concluded that no safety concerns were identified and the study has met the primary endpoints of safety. Further, the safety data has been submitted to the DCGI for review and approval to continue phase 3 clinical trials.

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Puducherry

School shut down after teacher tests positive for virus

A government middle school in Pakkamudayanpet here was shut down on Monday after a teacher tested positive for COVID-19. Over a hundred staff members and students were administered swab tests.

The premises of the Dr. B.R. Ambedkar Government Middle School was disinfected. So far, no one else has tested positive for the virus.

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Karnataka

State awaits arrival of COVID-19 vaccine vials

With the State expecting the arrival of COVID-19 vaccine consignments ‘anytime soon’, Health and Medical Education Minister K. Sudhakar said the vaccination - that will begin from January 16 - will be given in two doses.

“The second dose will be administered to frontline workers 28 days after the first one. Around 45 days later, immunogenicity in our bodies will be developed. And, until then people who get vaccinated should be careful,” said the Minister, who accompanied Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa in the Prime Minister’s videoconference meeting with CMs of all States on Monday.

Read more
 

(With inputs from our Correspondents, agencies)

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Printable version | Jan 22, 2021 9:58:24 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/coronavirus-live-updates-january-12-2021/article33555305.ece

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