Back in 2020, we were hit with the biggest pandemic our generation has ever seen, Covid-19. Most of the population faced the brunt of the pandemic, while some lost the people dear to them, some became unemployed in the blink of an eye.
India came up against countless infections which led to the medical industry collapsing. However, talks of vaccines began and after a while, the Government of India introduced vaccines approved by The World Health Organisation, Covishield, and Covaxin, respectively. It urged the citizens of India to get vaccinated so that we as a country can fight the severity of this virus.
How does the market for Covid vaccines work?
Vaccines are produced and developed through a collaboration between the governments, publicly funded research universities, and pharmaceutical companies. Most of the medical research is done by these universities led by various experts and professionals. However, the funds are provided by the pharmaceutical companies. Not only do they have the funds but also the ability and experience to take these medical revolutions through various clinical trials, development approved by doctors. Besides that, the government also plays a major role in the vaccine market. The government is the one to provide the early fundings known as the push funding and are the final buyers of the vaccine, known as the pull funding.
Why are vaccines important?
Professionals behind the Covid vaccines are still learning more about the science behind the vaccines as time progresses but it has been proven that Covid vaccines are effective. To be precise, they are not 100% effective but do reduce the severity of the infection. They provide us protection not only from the virus but also from hospitalisation and death. Once a person receives the vaccine, the body produces antibodies that help your body and your immune system fight the virus if one is ever exposed to the infection.
Different types of vaccines and how they work
Live Attenuated Vaccines- Usually, in these vaccines, the virus is active but has been debilitated so that it can reproduce in the body various times and create an immune system without causing the disease or the virus. Post immunisation, the weakened virus grows in the vaccinated person. These types of vaccines do not typically cause the disease in vaccinated people with strong immune systems and if they do, it is milder than the virus which has been transferred directly.
Dead vaccines- Like live attenuated vaccines, these vaccines do not contain the live virus, the virus is either dead or split. Dead vaccines are safe for people with impaired immune systems but they may not be as immune to the virus as people with stronger immune systems, after receiving the vaccination. Not only this but these vaccines also require several doses or boosters for protection against this virus.
Covishield and Covaxin
Covaxin was formulated by Bharat Biotech in alliance with the Indian Medical Research Council. The council isolated the covid virus and allowed Bharat Biotech a strain for the development of the inactivated vaccination. Covishield was developed locally by the Serum Institute of India. Covishield is produced from the weakened version of the common cold virus.
The term Vaccine Diplomacy is a type of medical diplomacy that is utilised to ameliorate a nation’s diplomatic relations and ascendancy of other nations.
With the second wave diminishing gradually and the number of vaccinations being administered are 1 crore doses, daily. Owing to this, India decided to recommence the export of excess vaccinations from October. Around 90 countries benefited through the Made In India vaccines. However, this export was put an end to, due to the second wave when many cities were already dealing with vaccine scarcity. The Central Government was held accountable for supplying doses to other countries at the expense of India’s citizens. However, the government has provided its citizens with assurance that their needs are vital, and vaccinating India’s citizens stays on top of their priority list. However, it’s essential to get enough supply of the doses correct this time to avert the scarcity in order to fight the third wave, we are currently expecting. Only one-fourth of India’s eligible population has received both the doses of the vaccination.
Covid 19 has become our new normal. It has been close to two years that India has been battling the pandemic. In these two years, people from all over the world have suffered great losses due to this virus but one thing that can help us go back to times before covid is the vaccination. Covid Vaccinations not only help you be safe but also fellow citizens around you. It will be the reason we can someday hope to be around people without worrying about masks and sanitisation. As we have been observing, India might see a third wave in the next month, hence it is crucial to complete your vaccination doses to help fight the third wave.
According to the data that was updated a few days prior, 142 crores of doses have been administered, 58 crore citizens are fully vaccinated which amounts to 42% citizens fully vaccinated. Through this data, we are acquainted with the number of vaccines that have been administered and looking at the numbers, almost half of the population of India has received only one shot and the other half hasn’t received the first one as well. With the third wave, clouding our minds, we must get vaccinated and urge others to do so, as well.