The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation has decided to collect data on beneficiaries who were hospitalised after having received both doses of the Covid-19 vaccine. This comes after the Indian Council of Medical Education and Research asked all states to collate such data to be used in a study to identify whether Covid symptoms post-vaccination are moderate, mild or severe. Civic officials said the aim in collecting this data was to study the efficacy of vaccines and how many were protected from coronavirus after taking the jab.
Mumbai civic officials have also directed the concerned authorities to be ready with the data of beneficiaries who have tested Covid-positive after having received just one dose of the vaccine. But this data will be hard to collate, as many such cases have not been reported.
“It will help us understand how vaccines are helpful in reducing hospitalisation and the burden on the health infrastructure. Moreover, it will be a difficult study, but it will also make us understand the effectiveness of vaccines on Mumbaikars,” said Additional Municipal Commissioner Suresh Kakani.
According to the vaccine data provided by the civic health department, so far, 29.55 lakh beneficiaries have been vaccinated since the vaccination drive started in January, of which 22.22 lakh have taken the first dose and 7.33 lakh have taken their second doses.
According to a senior health official, there were less than two per cent of cases reported from civic-run hospitals, where patients had been hospitalised after taking both doses or even one dose of the Covid-19 vaccine. “One in 25 patients has tested Covid-positive after taking the jab; however, all of them had mild symptoms.
There were few who had severe symptoms because of comorbidities, following which their oxygen levels dropped and they had to be admitted to the hospital for more than two weeks. But there are many cases that are unreported, as beneficiaries who had mild symptoms after taking their shots may have been treated at home,” he said.
Health experts have welcomed the BMC’s move, saying the study is much-needed as there are many rumours, speculations or myths related to Covid vaccines, due to which there are people still hesitant to take their jabs and end up contracting Covid. “There is need for awareness on vaccines, as many people still think they will be Covid-positive after taking vaccine shots. This study will not only clear the air but will also encourage most of them to take vaccines as soon as possible,” said an expert.