What the Vaccine has in store for you
Amidst the global COVID pandemic and the ever-growing discomfort among the masses, it is pretty clear that the COVID-19 vaccine is the only possible ray of hope in this challenging period. India’s vaccination drive started in mid-January, being rolled out in stages. Starting with Phase I, we had One Crore Healthcare Workers, Two Crore Frontline, and Municipal Workers vaccinated. The second phase included Elderly Population, going down to Areas With High COVID-19 Infection / People With Comorbidities, and finally, the Rest Of The Population.
Mechanism of Vaccine simplified
By Dr. Haryax Pathakm
To think of the SARS-CoV-2 virus as a Ferrero Rocher ball for elementary understanding.
- Spike Protein = Nutty spikes
- Lipid Membrane = Outer Chocolate Layer
- Nucleocapsid = Wafery Layer
- RNA = Innermost Chocolate
Spike protein allows the virus to enter the cell and cause infection. Vaccines aim to try and prevent this infection in your body. Hence, most of the vaccines are targeting the Spike Protein. Scientists sequenced the RNA (innermost chocolate) of the virus and identified the genes making the Spike Protein.
Covaxin (by Bharat Biotech) is like a lifeless, tasteless chocolate ball, having killed the SARS-CoV-2 virus and taken its ability to cause infection away. However, the human body can still mount an immune response against it. It is the only vaccine in application right now that uses an inactivated virus.
Covishield , Sputnik V and Janssen
What if the crunchy nuts of the ball are used in another chocolate? That’s Covishield (by Oxford University and AstraZeneca). The Spike protein genes are mixed with a Chimpanzee adenovirus (very similar to the SARS-CoV-2 virus) that can’t cause infection in humans. It makes the Spike Protein in our body.
Sputnik V (by Gamaleya Research Institute) and Janssen (by Johnson & Johnson) follow a similar mechanism of action to Covishield.
Any Adverse Reactions To Look Out For After Taking COVID-19 Vaccine?
Explaining the same, Dr. R Gangakhedkar, Ex-Deputy Director Indian Council Of Medical Research (ICMR), said,
“By and large, one must remember that when you take the vaccine there will be some local reactions like at the vaccination site itself someone might feel tenderness, pain or minor swelling. There could be people who might develop fever, some might develop fatigue, but all these are mild transactory-symptoms, which in a day or two are bound to disappear, so one should not worry about it.”
What Is The Duration Of Immunity After Taking The Vaccine?
Explaining the efficacy of the Coronavirus vaccine, Dr. Shekhar C Mande, Director General, Council of Scientific & Industrial Research, said,
“The duration of immunity is still an open question because the disease is only 11-months old now. The first of the vaccine trials that began, especially the phase-3 began in July and August, so as of now, we don’t know how long the person will be immune to the disease with the vaccine. But all this will be known very soon as we progress to different stages.”
By recent Government guidelines, there needs to be a gap of three months between two doses of the vaccine.
India has so far given more than 100 million doses of two approved vaccines — Covishield and Covaxin. We aim to vaccinate 250 million “priority people” by the end of July. But experts say that the pace of vaccination has been slow, and unless the drive is scaled up, the target could be missed.
Why get the COVID-19 vaccine?
- COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective.
- Once you are fully vaccinated, you can start doing what you miss, well, obviously with certain precautions.
- COVID-19 vaccination is a safer way to help build protection.
- COVID-19 vaccination will be an essential tool to help stop the pandemic.
-Ripudaman Singh, Techniche Media