COVID-19 Pandemic has terrified people all over the world in 2020, affecting over 93 million people and claiming over 2.0 million lives. Even though cases have come down, people are still under the fear of this lethal infectious disease, as new cases are shooting up every other day.
The year 2021 brought in is the huge rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine that will begin in our country today. People in India are keenly bracing for one of the largest vaccination drives. The countrymen hope that post-vaccination, they can positively resume normal life as it was in pre-lockdown period. However, with the inoculation process set to begin, a spectrum of questions are bound to arise among the people about – its effectiveness, action and most essentially side effects.
Read on to find out the merits of the COVID-19 vaccines, how they work and necessary measures to follow.
What Are The Health Incentives Of Getting A COVID-19 Vaccine?
Coronavirus disease can lead to serious and lethal complications in a few people, as it is a highly infectious, getting COVID-19 vaccine can help in shielding the body by building an antibody response in the system. Moreover, getting vaccinated may also help you protect your close contacts from being affected by a novel coronavirus.
What Are The Vaccines Approved In India?
The national drug regulator, Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) early this month gave emergency restricted permission for two vaccines Covaxin, developed by Bharat Biotech and Covishield manufactured by Serum Institute of India.
How Do Vaccines Work?
Covishield vaccine developed by Serum Institute of India is a non-replicating viral vector that makes use of another weakened virus like the common cold. This vaccine works to make spike protein on the virus’s surface, where the body’s immune system will identify that the protein doesn’t belong there and begins building an immune response making antibodies against the virus.
Covaxin manufactured by Bharat Biotech uses a specially designed technology of an inactivated vaccine that makes use of the killed SARS-CoV-2 virus, this will not infect or imitate once injected but acts to trigger an immune response. This vaccine is possible to target more than the spike protein, as it purposes to develop an immune stimulus to the nucleocapsid protein.
Specific Guidelines on Contraindications
The COVID-19 vaccine cannot be given to people who belong to any of three groups:
COVID-19 vaccine is recommended only for people above 18 years of age.
Pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers should not receive the vaccine.
Person showing immediate or delayed onset of allergy reaction to vaccines or injections, pharmaceutical products or food items should avoid getting vaccine.
FAQ About COVID Vaccinations:
- Will everyone be given COVID 19 vaccine simultaneously?
The Indian government has selected the primary groups who will be vaccinated as they are at increased risk based on the availability of vaccines. The first groups include frontline and healthcare workers, while the second group to receive the vaccine will be individual over 50 years of age and persons under 50 years with comorbid health problems.
- Is it compulsory to take the vaccine?
No, vaccination for COVID-19 is voluntary, however, it is suggested to receive the COVID-19 vaccine for shielding one-shelf against this deadly disease and also to limit the spread of this disease to the close contacts.
- The vaccines were developed in a little span of time? Are they safe and effective?
Yes, the vaccines to be introduced in the country will be safe and effective. The regulatory bodies have cleared it based on several stages of trials to ensure its safety and efficacy.
- Can a person currently having COVID-19 infection be vaccinated?
A person with confirmed or suspected coronavirus disease may increase the risk of spreading it to others at vaccination venue. It is advisable that infected individuals should put vaccination on hold for 14 days till symptoms settle.
- Is it needed for a COVID recovered person to take the vaccine?
Yes, it is suggested to receive COVID vaccine shot irrespective of past history of infection with coronavirus. This will aid in developing a strong immune reaction against the disease.
- What is the time span required for the COVID-19 vaccine doses administration?
Two shots of the COVID19 vaccine have to be administered at a 28-day interval. Medical experts recommend that an interval of 2-3 months between each dose can increase efficacy.
- Will the COVID-19 vaccine have any side effects?
Mild fever and pain at the site of injection are typical side effects, which is quite common with all other vaccines.
- Can a person get the COVID-19 vaccine without registration with the Health Department?
No, registration of beneficiary is compulsory to receive COVID vaccination. Only after registration the necessary details on the CoWin app, time will be allotted with the beneficiary. However, the app is yet to be released for the public domain.
- What documents are required for registration of eligible beneficiary?
The below-mentioned ID with Photo any one can be produced at the time of registration:
Health Insurance Smart Card issued under the scheme of Ministry of Labour
Mahatma Gandhi National Rural
Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA)
Official identity cards issued to
Passbooks issued by Bank/Post Office
Service Identity Card with photograph
Issued to employees by Central/ State
Govt./ PSUs/Public Limited Companies
Smart card issued by RGI under NPR
- Do I still need to wear Facemasks and maintain social distancing after receiving the vaccine shot?
Yes, it is essential to maintain COVID-19 safety standards even after being vaccinated. The outcome of immunization takes 14 days to develop after the administration of the two dosages.
(FAQ Source: UNICEF India)