Daily Covid-19 Vaccine Updates: More than 1.90 cr doses inoculated so far in India
Over 1.90 cr Covid-19 vaccine doses administered so far in India. Photo: AP

Over 1.90 cr Covid-19 vaccine doses administered so far in India

The cumulative number of Covid-19 vaccine doses administered in the country on Friday crossed 1.90 Crores. A total of 1,90,40,175 vaccine doses have been given, as per the provisional report till 7 pm on Friday. These include 68,96,529 Healthcare workers (HCWs) who have taken the 1st dose and 32,94,612 HCWs who have taken the 2nd dose, 62,94,755 FLWs (1st dose), 1,23,191 Frontline Workers (FLWs) (2nd dose), 21,17,862 beneficiaries more than 60 years old, and 3,13,226 beneficiaries aged 45 and above with specific co-morbidities, according to Livemint.

Total 10,34,672 vaccine doses were given till 7 pm on Friday, the 49th day of the program. Out of which 8,25,537 beneficiaries were vaccinated for 1st dose and 2,09,135 HCWs and FLWs received 2nd dose of vaccine as per the provisional report.

The countrywide vaccination drive was rolled out on 16th Jan 2021 with HCW and vaccination of the FLW started from 2nd Feb 2021. The next phase of covid-19 vaccination has commenced from 1st March 2021 for those who are over 60 years of age and for people aged 45 and above with specified co-morbid conditions.

As the vaccination against coronavirus continues, six States, Maharashtra, Punjab, Haryana, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, and Delhi have reported high daily new covid-19 cases in the last 24 hours. At least 84.44% of the new cases reported in the last 24 hours (16,838) are from these six States. While over 16,838 cases were reported in the last 24 hours, 113 deaths were also reported in the same period. With this, the total cases climbed to 1,11,90,884, and deaths mounted to 157,690.

Six States account for 88.5% of the new deaths. Maharashtra saw the maximum casualties (60). Punjab follows with 15 daily deaths. Kerala reported 14 deaths.

France could follow Italy and block vaccine shipments, Health Minister says

Daily Covid-19 Vaccine Updates: More than 1.90 cr doses inoculated so far in India
France could follow Italy and block vaccine shipments. Photo: Financial Times

France said Friday it may follow Italy in blocking Covid-19 vaccine shipments as concerns about vaccine nationalism rise, CNN reported.

The comments by French Health Minister Olivier Véran came the day after Rome invoked European Union powers to block the export of 250,000 Covid-19 AstraZeneca vaccine doses to Australia, in a dramatic escalation of a dispute between the bloc and the drug giant.

"Of course, I understand what Italy did," Véran said during an interview with CNN affiliate BFM on Friday. "We could do the same thing."

A spokesperson for Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi told CNN that Italy and the European Commission had agreed on the action. This is the first time that such EU measures have been used for vaccines. AstraZeneca's supply chain includes a manufacturing plant in Anagni, Italy.

"We are closely discussing with Italians, as well as with all our European partners to have a European approach on the issue," Véran said.

"Since the first day, France has believed in a shared European approach," he added.

In late January, a public and acrimonious fight erupted between the EU and AstraZeneca over vaccine delays, after the company advised the bloc that it would deliver tens of millions fewer doses than agreed by the end of March.

The European Commission later adopted new measures giving member states the power to restrict the export of vaccines outside the bloc, in certain situations. Italy justified invoking the powers by citing AstraZeneca's delays in supplying its vaccine to Italy and the EU, and noting that Australia is not considered a "vulnerable" nation to Covid-19 by the EU.

COVAX delivered 20 million doses to the world’s poor in the first week of distribution, WHO director-general says

An international program set up to get coronavirus vaccines to the world delivered 20 million vaccine doses to 20 countries in the first week of distribution, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the World Health Organization's director-general, said Friday.

Next week, COVAX will deliver 14.4 million vaccine doses to an additional 31 countries, Tedros said, bringing the total number of countries reached by COVAX to 51.

COVAX is a global vaccine initiative run by a coalition that includes the Vaccine Alliance known as Gavi and WHO and is funded by donations from governments, multilateral institutions, and foundations. Its mission is to buy coronavirus vaccines in bulk and send them to poorer nations that can't compete with wealthy countries in securing contracts with the major drug companies.

On Wednesday, Ghana became the first country to receive Covid-19 vaccines through COVAX. Ghana received 600,000 doses of AstraZeneca’s vaccine on Wednesday, according to CNN.

In addition to Ghana and Ivory Coast, Angola, Cambodia, Colombia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gambia, India, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, Mali, Moldova, Nigeria, Philippines, South Korea, Rwanda, Senegal, Sudan and Uganda also received vaccine doses from COVAX this past week, Tedros said.

While the announcement is the reason for some optimism, there is an urgent need to increase production if COVAX is to meet its goal of delivering 2 billion vaccine doses by the end of 2021, Tedros said.

More Americans Suddenly Pro-Vaccine, Poll Finds

Nearly 70% of U.S. adults say they have already received at least one dose of a Covid-19 vaccine or plan to get vaccinated, representing a substantial increase from the 51% who stated they planned to receive the vaccine in September, according to a new national survey released Friday by Pew Research Center.

The reduction in vaccine hesitancy among Black Americans has been dramatic, with 61% now saying they want or have already received a coronavirus vaccine, which is almost double the percentage who said they planned to get vaccinated back in September.

A partisan divide persists, however, and has actually widened.

Some 56% of Republicans now say they plan to get or have already received a coronavirus vaccine, compared to 83% of Democrats.

In early February, the U.S was administering an approximate average of 1.3 million vaccine doses per day. According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, that daily average topped 2 million this week. Johnson & Johnson’s one-shot dose was authorized for emergency use over the weekend but is not yet accounted for in the CDC data. Early in the pandemic, the World Health Organization stated that between 60% to 70% of a population must acquire resistance to the coronavirus, either through infection or vaccination, to achieve herd immunity. Yet, Dr. Anthony Fauci, President Joe Biden’s chief medical advisor, has stated that that number may be north of 80%. The Pew survey found that those respondents who were hesitant to receive the vaccine primarily cited fears over potential side effects and concerns that vaccines were developed and tested too quickly.

More than 350,000 Singapore residents have received their first dose of COVID-19 vaccine: Health Minister

Daily Covid-19 Vaccine Updates: More than 1.90 cr doses inoculated so far in India

Singapore started its COVID-19 vaccination exercise for seniors at Tanjong Pagar Community Centre on Jan 27, 2021. Photo: Jeremy Long

Singapore is making “steady progress” in its COVID-19 vaccination program, Health Minister Gan Kim Yong said on Friday (Mar 5).

Speaking in Parliament during his ministry’s Committee of Supply debate, he said that as of Thursday, more than 350,000 Singapore residents have received the first dose of their vaccine, including about 80 percent of healthcare workers.

Singapore has so far authorized two COVID-19 vaccines for use - Pfizer-BioNTech, and Moderna.

Singapore received the shipment of a third vaccine by China's Sinovac Biotech in February, but at the time, it had not been authorized for use in the country, said Channelnewsasia.

Mr. Gan also said that more than 40,000 seniors aged 70 and above have received their first dose as of Thursday. The program will be rolled out soon to seniors aged 60 and above, he said.

COVID-19 vaccinations for seniors aged 70 and above began across Singapore last month.

Health Canada approves 4th COVID-19 vaccine as Pfizer agrees to accelerate deliveries

Daily Covid-19 Vaccine Updates: More than 1.90 cr doses inoculated so far in India

Johnson & Johnson's one-dose vaccine has received regulatory approval from Health Canada for use in this country. (Justin Tallis/AFP/Getty Images)

COVID-19 vaccine made by Johnson & Johnson is the first single-dose vaccine to receive approval for use in Canada.

Canada's national campaign to inoculate people against the novel coronavirus got good news on two fronts today: one vaccine maker now plans to accelerate its deliveries and federal regulators have cleared a fourth COVID-19 vaccine for use in this country.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said today that, after negotiations with the federal government, vaccine manufacturer Pfizer has agreed to move up delivery of 3.5 million doses of its COVID-19 vaccine — originally scheduled to arrive in the summer — to the next three months.

The company will deliver an additional 1.5 million doses in March, one million more doses in April and another million in May, Trudeau said, bringing the total number of doses of all approved vaccines expected to arrive by the end of this month to 8 million.

The announcement came just hours after Health Canada approved the use of Johnson & Johnson's COVID-19 vaccine in Canada, providing provinces and territories with another vaccine in addition to those previously approved from Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, and AstraZeneca-Oxford.

A second version of the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine that is biologically identical but manufactured under different conditions by the Serum Institute of India under the brand name "Covishield" has also been authorized.

The Johnson & Johnson vaccine, produced by the U.S. health care giant's pharmaceutical subsidiary, Janssen Inc., is widely seen as one of the easiest to distribute because it requires only one dose and can be stored for long periods of time at regular refrigerator temperatures of 2 C to 8 C.

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