Coronavirus | Vaccines safe for those on blood thinners: ICMR

Will work with private sector to increase coverage

Updated - January 28, 2021 11:36 pm IST

Published - January 28, 2021 08:27 pm IST - NEW DELHI

A health worker injects coronavirus vaccine in Mumbai. File

A health worker injects coronavirus vaccine in Mumbai. File

Both COVID vaccines approved for emergency use in India — Covaxin and Covishield — are safe for people on blood thinners, Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) Director General Balram Bhargav said on Thursday.

Addressing a Health Ministry press conference, he added that manufacturers of both the vaccines have approached the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) for revision of this contraindication on their factsheets.

“Relative contraindications regarding blood thinners have been mentioned in the factsheets of both the vaccines and both the companies have written to the DCGI regarding revision of this. The revision will happen every soon. Blood thinners are of two categories — antiplatelets and anticoagulants. For those on antiplatelets like aspirin, the vaccine causes no problem but for those on anti-coagulants, the tendency to bleed is much higher. This is also a relative contraindication and the anticoagulant can be stopped a day or two before administering the vaccine,” Mr Bhargav said.

The Health Ministry added that it is engaging with private stakeholders to look at increasing the future coverage of the COVID vaccine.

“The Ministry is also actively working at reducing wastage of the vaccine by bringing in a more flexible digital platform and issuing an exhaustive guideline to States/UTs to manage waste below 10%,” Secretary in the Health Ministry Rajesh Bhushan said.

He added that the Ministry is also in constant dialogue with States/UTs of Jharkhand, Delhi, Tamil Nadu, Uttarakhand, Chhattisgarh and Maharashtra which need to improve their vaccination performance.

“The number of vaccine doses administered till 2 p.m. on Thursday stands at 25,07,556 and the number of active COVID cases in India is less than 1.75 lakhs after seven months. The daily number of deaths less than 125 after eight months and declining while cumulative positivity rate, 5.51% and declining,” he added.

Meanwhile Health Minister Harsh Vardhan, while addressing an event on Restoring Cross Border Mobility by World Economic Forum’s Common Trust Network on Thursday through video conference said, “The COVID-19 pandemic has gravely wounded the world economy with serious consequences impacting all communities and individuals. It has also hit supply chains and therefore impacted trade and development in a major way.”

“Moving rapidly across borders, along the principal arteries of the global economy, the spread of the virus has benefited from the underlying interconnectedness of globalization, catapulting a global health crisis into a global economic shock that has hit the most vulnerable the hardest,” the Minister said.

The release issued by the Ministry noted that the Minister also said that in the context of public health, clear, transparent and timely sharing of crucial information on public health emergencies by undertaking rapid risk assessment and disseminating the risk is the key to striking a balance between public health and trade and travel.

“Conducting such risk assessments would entail rapid analysis of causative agents, their origin and transmission dynamics, geographic spread, pathogenicity of disease, population and age group affected, associated fatality, potential impact on health, livelihood and economy,” said the Minister.

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