Covid-19 situation worrisome across globe, India can't show laxity despite fall in cases, says health ministry
The Union health ministry said on Tuesday that the coronavirus (Covid-19) disease situation was worrisome across the entire world and India could not show laxity despite witnessing a decline in cases.
Addressing a press briefing, Union health secretary Rajesh Bhushan said, “The Covid-19 situation is worrisome around the world; even though daily new cases are declining in India, we can’t show laxity.”
Bhushan pointed out that the coronavirus infections graph was climbing in countries such as the United States (US), Brazil, Russia, United Kingdom (UK) and South Africa and that these countries had a population which was far less than that of India.
He said that the active cases in the country were declining steadily and remained below the 220,000-mark adding that Maharashtra and Kerala were the only states that saw over 50,000 active cases.
With regard to vaccines for combating Covid-19, the Union health secretary said that the Centre had been proactive and pre-emptive in addressing the vaccination needs in the country and a task force was set up in May last year to promote indigenous research and development in vaccines, pharmaceuticals and diagnostics.
Ahead of the nationwide vaccination roll-out from January 16, Bhushan highlighted that the Centre was working in close collaboration with all states and Union Territories (UTs) for vaccine roll-out preparedness.
However, there would be no compromise on existing healthcare services during the vaccine drive and there would be no compromise on scientific and regulatory norms, he added.
The Centre had approved the Covid-19 vaccines manufactured by the Serum Institute of India (SII) and Bharat Biotech on January 3. The Serum Institute had earlier started dispatching its vaccine ‘Covishield’ across 13 cities and would provide the first 100 million doses at ₹200/dose. Meanwhile, the government was procuring 5.5 million doses of Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin of which 3.85 million doses would be priced at ₹295/dose.
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