Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Thursday urged people to take the indigenous Covaxin vaccine without any hesitation on the basis of the latest report of the Indian Council of Medical Research, the country’s top research body, about its third phase clinical trials.
People had some doubts about the Covaxin, manufactured by the Bharat Biotech with the support of the ICMR, he said at a press meet.
There was some reluctance among the public to take the vaccine as part of the delay in getting the results of its third phase trials, he said.
“ICMR has now released the interim results of the third phase clinical trials. According to it, the vaccine has shown an interim efficacy of 81 per cent in preventing COVID-19,” Mr Vijayan said.
It has also been reported that it can prevent the viral infection with very severe symptoms and effectively — coronavirus related deaths, he said.
As per ICMR, Covaxin also has the ability to neutralize the UK variant strain of SARS-CoV-2.
“Therefore, based on these evidence, people should be ready to accept Covaxin along with Covishield vaccine,” the Chief Minister added.
Stating that the total number of people under treatment for COVID-19 in Kerala till Wednesday was 45,995, he said it was the lowest figure after September 25 last year.
“It shows that the disease tends to subside very rapidly in the state. In the last one week alone, the number of patients has dropped by 13 per cent. It dropped by 30 per cent in a month,” Mr Vijayan said, quoting figures.
He said vaccines were generally well-received in the state and 3,47,801 health workers have received the shot till Wednesday.
Kerala now has adequate stock of COVID-19 vaccine and the union health minister has informed that 21 lakh doses would reach the state on March 9, he said.
The state government has also requested the Centre to take steps for the smooth registration in the designated platform, the Chief Minister said, adding that the number of vaccination centres would be increased in a phased manner.