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Vaccine hesitancy

Let us put a STOP to falsehoods about vaccines, says Union Health Minister

Vaccine hesitancy big hurdle in Covid-19 inoculation drive

In a bid to inject confidence in frontline and healthcare workers about Covid-19 vaccines, Government has kicked off an awareness blitz to tackle vaccine hesitancy. Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan unveiled Information Education Communication (IEC) posters to address the emerging issue of vaccine hesitancy in some sections of the population in the country. As on 22 January 2021, till 7 am, nearly 10.5 lakh (10,43,534) beneficiaries have received the vaccination under the world’s largest immunisation programme which kickstarted last week. In the last 24 hours, 2,37,050 people were vaccinated across 4,049 sessions. 18,167 sessions have been conducted so far.

But this drive could have been even faster, had it not been for the glitches that have been observed in the CoWIN app (COVID Vaccine Intelligence Network). The CoWIN app is used to register and acknowledge vaccination beneficiaries, to allocate vaccination centres and aids in monitoring recipients. The provision to allow an alternate beneficiary to register on the spot has now been added. We have enhanced Co-WIN software by creating more session sites, more sessions per site & change in site location; For more safety of the beneficiaries, tagging of contraindications is being enabled in vaccinator module:

Covid-19 vaccines are safe

The Union Health Minister again reiterated that Covid-19 vaccines – Covishield, Covaxin – are safe. “All eminent doctors of well-known hospitals have taken the vaccine and praised the exercise for its desired end. It is only a handful of vested political interests who are interested in spreading rumour and encouraging vaccine hesitancy among those vulnerable to such propaganda in the population. The paradox is that countries across the globe are asking us for access to the vaccines while a section of our own is fomenting misinformation and doubt for narrow political ends.” He stated that the prominent doctors along with many other healthcare workers within the government and the private sector have taken the COVID19 vaccine, and have returned to their work without any side effects.

He urged everyone to counter the vested campaigns of untruth and misinformation. “Let us put a STOP to these falsehoods”, he forcefully said. He appealed to people to seek the correct information from credible and authentic sources such as the Health Ministry, PIB, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, MyGov website etc. He reiterated that “Truth is powerful and shall prevail”. And encouraged everyone to share the IEC posters to multiply the virtuous cycle of truth.

Also Read: Who should avoid getting Covaxin shots? All about it

The Union Health Minister reminded everyone of the achievements of the country, “India is one of the few countries to halt the march of COVID-19 and simultaneously develop a vaccine for COVID, thanks to the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi ji who bestowed his attention to get the country rid of the pandemic.”

Explaining the role of the vaccination in eradicating diseases, he noted, “The elimination of Polio and Smallpox was made possible by large scale immunization. Once immunized, not only that person is not capable of catching the disease, he/she is also unable to transmit the disease to others thus passing on the social benefit to the larger society he/she interacts with. This was also the logic of undertaking mass immunization of women and children against the twelve diseases under Mission Indradhanush. Vaccination against COVID will similarly create persons incapable of transmitting the disease and eradicate the disease in some time.”

Meanwhile, as many as 14,545 fresh coronavirus cases were reported in India, taking the country’s caseload to 1,06,25,428, the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MHFW) data updated at 8 am on Friday showed. 163 deaths were recorded in the last 24 hours.

Covid-19 tally in India

  • Confirmed cases: 1,06,25,428
  • Rightwards arrowRecovered: 1,02,83,708 (96.78%)Thumbs up
  • Rightwards arrowActive cases: 1,88,688 (1.78%)
  • Rightwards arrowDeaths: 1,53,032 (1.44%)