No change in interval has been recommended for Covaxin vaccine doses

The gap between two doses of the Covid-19 vaccine Covishield has been increased to 12-16 weeks from the existing interval of 6-8 weeks.

This has been done on the recommendation of the COVID Working Group which was based on available real-life evidences, particularly from the UK, India's Union Health Ministry announced on Thursday.

The recommendation of the COVID Working Group was accepted by the National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for Covid-19 (NEGVAC) headed by Member (Health) Niti Aayog VK Paul in its meeting on Wednesday.

Following this, the recommendation received the approval of the health ministry.

No change in interval has been recommended for Covaxin vaccine doses, which will continue to be four weeks.

Covishield is manufactured in India by the Pune-based Serum Institute of India (SII) under licence from AstraZeneca.

Covaxin, which was developed by Bharat Biotech in collaboration with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), is manufactured by the Hyderabad- based pharma company.

Cumulative Vaccine Doses Administered Crosses 17.72 cr

Meanwhile, the cumulative number of COVID-19 vaccine doses administered in the country under the Phase-3 of the nationwide Vaccination Drive has crossed 17.72 crore (177.2 million).

According to data with the health ministry till 7 Ammon Thursday, 17,72,14,256 vaccine doses have been administered through 25,70,537 sessions.

These include 96,00,420 HealthCare Workers (HCWs) who have taken the 1st dose and 65,70,062 HCWs who have taken the 2nddose, 1,42,34,793 FrontLine Workers or FLWs (1stdose), 80,30,007 FLWs (2nd dose), 34,80,618 beneficiaries under 18-45 age group (1st dose), 5,62,43,308 (1st dose) and 81,58,535 (2nd dose) beneficiaries aged 45 to 60 years.

When it comes to people over 69 years old, the figure is 5,40,99,241 1st dose beneficiaries and 1,67,97,272 2nd dose beneficiaries.

Ten states account for 66.73% of the cumulative doses given so far in the country, with Maharashtra, Rajasthan and Gujarat heading the list.

Nearly 19 lakh vaccination doses were administered in the last 24 hours.