Since January 16, a total of 3,81,305 healthcare workers have been vaccinated with the Covid-19 vaccine till the evening of January 18. On Tuesday, 1,48,266 healthcare workers were vaccinated.
The healthcare workers will receive the second dose of the vaccine after a gap of four weeks. Across vaccination sites, a lack of consistency has been noticed regarding information sharing on the second dose and on post-vaccination monitoring. News18 spoke to a housekeeping staff in the Delhi State Cancer Institute who said that he was not particularly informed about post-vaccination monitoring via telephone. He was told that that vaccination will happen in a matter of four weeks.
“I was told that vaccination will happen after four weeks, however they did not give a specific date. I was told I will receive either a SMS or a call for the second dose like I did for the first round,” Dharmender, the housekeeping staffer said.
Dr Balram Bhargava, director general of Indian Council of Medical Research, had said last week that the vaccine’s effectiveness shows only after the second dose and hence those getting the vaccine have to maintain protocols like wearing masks and social distancing.
What is an adverse reaction and how many have been reported so far?
According to the union health ministry, an adverse event following immunisation (AEFI) is any unexpected medical occurrence which follows immunisation. It may or may not be related to vaccine or vaccination process. “Majority of the AEFIs are minor in nature: pain, mild swelling at injection site, mild fever, body ache, nausea, giddiness and mild allergic reactions like rashes, etc,” the health ministry has said in a press release.
What happens when someone has an adverse reaction?
Vaccination sites or session sites have been chosen across the country on the basis of the medical infrastructure available for quick and effective treatment of any side effects and or adverse events. Some side effects can be treated with an antibiotic, while some need anti-allergy medicine.
Then there are a little more serious events due to grave allergies, triggering of underlying conditions or impacts that may or may not be associated with the vaccine. The government has a protocol in place for reporting of such cases, case management at vaccination site, transportation, hospitalisation and advanced care in the event such cases come up.
How many adverse events following immunisation have been reported so far?
As of January 18, 580 cases of AEFI (adverse events following immunisation) have been reported, the union health ministry has said. Out of these, seven have required hospitalisation. Of the three cases reported from Delhi, two have been discharged whereas once case with reporting fainting is under observation at Max Hospital, Patparganj. The reported case of AEFI in Uttarakhand is stable and under observation at AIIMS, Rishikesh. In Chhattisgarh, one person is under observation at the Govt. Medical College, Rajnandgaon. Of the two cases of AEFI in Karnataka, one is under observation at District Hospital, Chitradurga and the second person is under observation at General Hospital, Challakere, Chitradurga.
Has any beneficiary died following vaccination?
Two deaths have been reported among healthcare workers, one in Uttar Pradesh and one in Karnataka, who have got one dose of the vaccine. Of the two deaths reported, one was a 52-year old male from Moradabad. He was vaccinated on January 16 and died on the evening of January 17. The post-mortem report said that his death was due cardiopulmonary disease and the health ministry has said his death was not linked to the vaccine. However, it is unclear at this stage if further investigation will happen to find out if his death was due to the vaccine.
The second death was that of Nagaraju, a 43-year old male from Bellary, Karnataka. He was a permanent employee of the health department. He was vaccinated on January 16 at 1 pm and passed away on Monday, January 18 after collapsing at work following after complaining about chest pain. Nagaraju’s cause of death was anterior wall infarction with cardiopulmonary failure, the Karnataka state health department said. The post mortem was scheduled at Vijayanagar Institute of Medical Sciences, Bellary, Karnataka on Monday.