Will Indian students in US be asked to get Covid vaccines again? All you need to know
According to a New York Times report, colleges and universities in the United States want their students to be vaccinated against Covid-19 before the fall semester starts, but the authorities mentioning specific vaccines, approved by the World Health Organization. Sputnik V and Covaxin are yet to receive WHO approval.
Here is what we know so far
1. Maharashtra, Kerala, Karnataka, Telangana have announced priority vaccination for students who are headed abroad. In Maharashtra, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation, Pune Municipal Corporation conducted such special drives for students and those who have foreign travel scheduled for work.
2. Kerala raised two issues with the vaccination of foreign-bound travellers. One, whether they should be given Covaxin as it is not on WHO's emergency list yet; two, what to do if one has the travel date before 12 weeks. As Co-Win will not allow booking for the second slot before 12 weeks, the Kerala health department has asked districts to clear such cases.
3. According to the New York Times report, Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs has said to an Indian student that she will be revaccinated once she reaches the campus.
4. Though no country has made vaccination mandatory for entry, there are university-specific rules, reports said. These rules were designed primarily for domestic students but will affect students from India and Russia. The idea of a vaccine passport for travelling from one country to another is still at an incipient stage and India has recently expressed its objection to such a "discriminatory" idea.
5. Bharat Biotech, the manufacturer of Covaxin, is expecting to get WHO approval by September. The government is pursuing the application, it has said.