India recorded 50,040 new cases of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) in the preceding 24 hours, the Union ministry of health and family welfare informed on Sunday in its daily bulletin — a slight increase from its spike of 48,698 new cases a day ago.
Further, the new fatalities saw a slight jump too with 1,258 more people succumbing to the disease. The death toll due to coronavirus in India stands at 395,751.
On the brighter side, the daily recoveries continue to surpass fresh infections as 57,944 were discharged between Saturday and Sunday. With this, the total number of discharges has gone up to 2,92,51,029 and the recovery rate has improved to 96.75%.
Kerala contributed 12,118 cases to the country’s daily numbers. It was followed by Maharashtra (9,812 cases) and Tamil Nadu (5,415 cases).
As a result, there are 5,86,403 active cases in the country currently, dipping by 9,162 in the last 24 hours.
Vaccination in India
The country attained a milestone on Friday as the total inoculation numbers crossed the 32-crore mark.
India has so far administered 32,17,60,077 anti-Covid shots, said the health ministry. As many as 64,25,893 from these were given in the last 24 hours.
— Ministry of Health (@MoHFW_INDIA) June 27, 2021
Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Gujarat, Haryana, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal have administered at least one dose of the vaccine to more than 10 lakh beneficiaries of the 18-44 age group.
Vaccination for elderly
The pace of vaccination of the 60-plus population has become sluggish in the past few weeks after an initial high, data suggests.
The healthcare experts have attributed the slowdown to mobility issues, misinformation and unsubstantiated apprehensions about the jabs.
According to the health ministry data, 2.29 crore elderly people have been fully vaccinated so far while 6.71 crore have received just one dose of the Covid-19 vaccine.
The 60-plus population in India was projected to be at 14.3 crore in 2021, so that would imply that just 16% of them have been fully vaccinated till now.
Vaccination for those over 60 years of age and those of 45-plus with co-morbidities started from March 1 at both government and private centres.
Vaccine against Delta Plus
A study on the effectiveness of the existing coronavirus vaccines against the Delta Plus variant, which has been notified as a “variant of concern”, is currently underway, said Dr Samiran Panda, head of epidemiology, ICMR.
Amid emerging concerns over the third wave of Covid-1, the epidemiologist said the third wave of Covid-19 will not be as severe as the second one, which had ravaged the country in April-May, and stretched healthcare infrastructure.
Suggesting that there is no need to panic, he asserted on the need for scaling up vaccination drive and Covid appropriate behaviour to mitigate many such future waves of the pandemic.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has expressed satisfaction at the rate of vaccination in the country amid the coronavirus pandemic, his office said on Saturday after a review meeting. During the meeting, PM called for the outreach to be widened with the help of NGOs, his office said.
The government is aiming to vaccinate the entire adult population by the end of the year.
“Total population – above 18 years of age – is approximately 93-94 crore. Administering two doses to these beneficiaries would require an estimated 186 to 188 crore vaccine doses. Out of this requirement, 51.6 crore doses will be made available for administration by July 31, leaving a requirement of approximately 135 crore vaccine doses for complete vaccination to the eligible population,” the Centre said in an affidavit filed by Manohar Agnani, Additional Secretary, Health Ministry.
The 375-page affidavit – filed in response to the Supreme Court’s pointed questions on its vaccine policy – also presented a roadmap on how it plans to procure the remaining 135 crore doses.
“Sputnik V vaccine, developed by M/s Gamaleya Institute, Russia has received Emergency Use Authorization by the DCGI in April 2021 and is now being administered in India,” it said.
In addition, vaccines from domestic pharmaceutical companies Biological E and Zydus Cadila are in the late stages of clinical trials and subject to regulatory approvals, it said. Zydus Cadila is working on a vaccine for 12-18 years of age and a vaccine for the age group will be available soon, the government said.