The Vaccine quandary

Disclaimer:  Doctors, scientists, drug companies, and the Government are doing their best to help society overcome the pandemic. I understand that Covid is a new thing to all, they are also experimenting to get the best results. No complaints and no grievances against anyone.

Having said that, as a layman I listed out several announcements in the chronological order

12th January 2021 – Quote – “There will be a gap of 28 days between two doses of COVID-19 vaccine and its effectiveness will begin 14 days after the second dose, the Health Ministry said on Tuesday”

[Observation – This is when vaccines were available with unwilling takers. So, 28 days gap was a good move. But it was announced as 28 days gap is good for higher efficiency]

22nd March 2021 – Quote – “Centre Revises Gap Between Covishield Vaccine Doses to 4-8 Weeks

[Observation – This is when the Covid cases were raising in the country, but the drug companies were not in a position to meet the Vaccine demand. But it was said that more the gap, the better the results!]

13th May 2021 – Quote – “the beneficiaries are advised to reschedule their appointments for a later date beyond the 84th day from the date of 1st dose vaccination,” the health ministry said in a statement

[Observation – This is when the Vaccines were simply not available and there was a huge cry for vaccines across the country. So, the statement said ‘based on the available real-life evidence, the gap between the two doses is increased to 12 – 16 weeks]

15th June 2021 – Quote – “Three of the 14 ” core members” of the National Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (NTAGI), the Centre’s advisory body, said the gap was doubled without the agreement of the scientific group

[Observation – They took so many days to counter the move of increasing the gap between the 2 doses. Look at the timing, maybe, the Vaccines will be available in abundance from the next month, so they need more takers. Now, my guess is that the so-called evidence will show other way round that the gap between the 2 doses should be shorter to counter the new variant of Covid!]

What is the dosage to be given?

The current dose is 0.5 ml of injection per person. Today, I read the news, Quote –“Make jab skin-deep, 1 dose can vaccinate 5, say experts” This means, 0.1 ml will be given instead of 0.5 ml.

[Observation – How we will know this? When we go to the vaccination centre, the syringe is kept ready, we won’t even know the quantity of injection! Now that the Government has announced Free Vaccination for All, will the ‘scientific reason’ prove that lesser the quantity better the protection?”

Overall, I felt the vaccination drive, increasing or reducing the gap between the doses or the quantum of vaccine is done based on commercial terms – demand and supply! However, all the time it is projected as if such a move is based on scientific evidence!

Will a day come, in the near future, that one dose of vaccination is sufficient?  Or if the production of vaccines is more, then ‘scientific evidence’ may creep up that ‘follow up dose/ booster dose’ is required after 12 months!

I may be wrong in my analysis. Will leave it to your judgment.

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About B E Kumar Prasad

B E Kumar Prasad
He is a Practicing Chartered Accountant in Bengaluru, India. He has 25+ years of experience in income tax, business setup, and NRI matters. He is also an Insolvency Professional and Registered Valuer (F&SA).Prasad welcomes your comments and questions. Please email him at [email protected]

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