Expedite vaccination drive: IMA

Kanyakumari / New Delhi

The Indian Medical Association (IMA) President Dr JA Jayalal on Wednesday called for speeding up the COVID vaccination drive and warned about the threat of a third wave as the majority of the country's population is not vaccinated.

Dr Jayalal said, "Covid-19 is ransacking the country, the number of cases is rising in the southern states with many people struggling to get oxygen support, hospital beds and drugs. The death toll is also on the rise. The only way forward is vaccination. If we're not pushing for mass vaccination, it's not safe to face the third wave that is bound to occur. Mass vaccination has to be done. Centre must procure a maximum number of vaccines, decentralise even to an extent the door to door vaccination."

"We should expedite the process and within a few months we should complete our target of 60-70 per cent vaccination," he said reminding that only 18.5 crore of people have been vaccinated and that India should get 70 to 80 crore of people vaccinated to achieve herd immunity.

"There is conflict as to when should people recovering from Covid get vaccinated. Making them wait for 6 months is a threat for them, exposing them to the virus," the IMA president said adding that, "Government should reconsider it with scientific evidence and come out with the objective that everyone in this country should get vaccinated at the earliest."

Delhi HC declines to stay

Covaxin trial on children

Delhi High Court on Wednesday sought the Centre's response on a plea seeking to set aside the permission granted by Drugs Controller General of India to Bharat Biotech for conducting the Phase 2/3 clinical trial of its Covaxin Covid-19 vaccine on the 2-18 age group.

A bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh refused to pass any interim order staying the permission granted as it issued notice to the DCGI, the Ministry of Women and Child Development and others.

The plea, filed by advocate Sanjeev Kumar, argued that the children, who would be part of the trials should not be termed as volunteers, as they cannot understand the nature of consequences for participating in the trial post their consent. The plea insisted that enrolling healthy children for the trial would amount to homicide.

According to the plea, a person can offer to do anything only if he/she is capable of understanding the consequences of his/her act. It argued that in the present case, the subject matter of clinical trials being minors (even toddlers who - for the reason of their age only - are not capable of even speaking and understanding languages in a proper manner) cannot be supposed to volunteer for the aforesaid clinical testing.

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