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No changes as of now in gap between Covishield doses, say govt sources

The Union Health Ministry has said there is no need to panic as such decisions will be taken after careful examination by the experts.

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Covishield (Photo: Reuters)

Amid calls to reduce the gap between two doses of Serum Institute of India's COVID-19 vaccine Covishield based on the new findings by Public Health England, the Central government will not take the decision to change the dosage interval immediately, said sources, adding that the authorities will review the scientific evidence for the same.

"There is going to be no changes in the interval between Covishield doses immediately. However, scientific evidence has been collected to review the decision in the coming meeting of the National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for COVID-19 (NEGVAC)," government sources told ANI.

The Union Health Ministry has said there is no need to panic as such decisions will be taken after careful examination by the experts.

"This is a dynamic process. There is no hardcore ideology in Science. Our experts will go through the latest developments and take a call," said Dr VK Paul, Niti Aayog member (Health) during a press briefing on Friday.

In India, the gap between the two doses of Covishield was widened to 12-16 weeks. The decision on widening the gap was based on international studies that claimed the protection offered by the first dose of the Covishield vaccine lasts longer and the second dose can be taken with a greater gap.

Recently, Dr Anthony Fauci, who is the top medical advisor to the United States President, had said that extending intervals between vaccine doses could leave people vulnerable to infection by one of the COVID-19 variants in circulation.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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First Published: Sat, June 12 2021. 14:33 IST