‘Vaccine hesitation still a problem in remote areas’

Naveen Bharat Editorial

New Delhi: Waiting for others to get the first Covid-19 vaccine and the fear of any adverse effects is still driving a significant segment of the population away from vaccines in India, showed the first analysis on vaccine hesitation in the country. Although no concrete data is available on the percentage of people who skip vaccines, it is estimated that in remote and rural areas, up to 10% of people may be suspicious.

An analysis by doctors associated with the Tata Memorial Center in Mumbai said mistrust in the safety of recently approved vaccines, fear of adverse effects, and rumors about infertility and deaths as a result of the Covid-19 vaccine, among other reasons Huh. fuel hitch.

The authors noted that according to the COVID Symptom Survey in India, the top five reasons provided for not getting vaccinated included: waiting for others to get it first (42%), others more than me ( 35%), fear is required. 34% of any adverse effects, vaccines would not work (21%) and distrust in vaccines.

Vaccine hesitation is becoming a problem, with very few potential solutions, the researchers said. Noting that there has been a significant increase in the vaccination campaign since the launch of the CoWIN registration portal, he said that based on the reported data, vaccine hesitation is rampant in far flung areas and regions.

Pointing out that reducing vaccine costs for college students could be a beneficial way to reduce vaccine hesitation, the researchers said the government’s COVID-19 vaccination communication strategy has significant operational and structural flaws in its current form. Huh. “The second wave of infections disrupted capacity-building for communication management at the national, state, district and sub-district levels,” the paper said.

Citing an international survey, the analysis noted that low- and middle-income countries such as Ecuador (97.0%), Malaysia (94.3%), Indonesia (93.3%) and China (91.3%) have the highest vaccine acceptance rates. Was. On the other hand, high-income countries such as Kuwait (23.6%), Jordan (28.4%), Italy (53.7%), Russia (54.9%), Poland (56.3%), USA (56.9%), and France (58.9%) had the lowest acceptance rate. Government officials say the hesitation of the vaccine may be lessened with most of the vaccines available in India to “prove their safety profile”.

Panel to lift export ban
Just weeks after the Center imposed curbs on the export of COVID-19 rapid antigen test kits, the Union Health Ministry has suggested lifting of these restrictions based on the recommendations of an empowered group. In a recent letter to the Directorate General of Foreign Trade, the ministry said that RTPCR test kits were added to the restricted category for export from June 2020, while RAT kits were also banned for exports from August this year. The letter said that an empowered group responsible for policy suggestions related to COVID-19 logistics has decided to revoke the restrictions imposed on the kits and allow free export of these products.

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