New Delhi: As India`s largest COVID-19 vaccination drive is underway, an AIIMS professor has claimed that the latest trials show that the safety and immunogenicity of India`s indigenous COVID-19 vaccine – Covaxin - are almost the same in children, as adults above 18-years of age.
Speaking to ANI, Dr Sanjay K Rai, a professor at Centre for Community Medicine, All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), said, "Covaxin`s trial was done on three age groups. The first group examined was between 12 -18 years, the second group was between 6- 12 years and the third age group was between 2-6 years."
Notably, Dr Rai was the principal investigator of Covaxin trials on children. "At first, we finished the examination of people aged between 12- 18 years and then subsequently other groups. Covaxin`s vaccine safety and immunogenicity are almost the same. However, the final results of these trials are awaited. We had already carried out trials on the adult population. For children, we are waiting for the results," said the doctor.
Dr Rai noted that globally it is observed that in children, SARS-CoV-2 isn`t fatal.
"Only a very mild infection is present. In a few children, it`s milder than the common cold. Currently, we don`t have any justification on whether Zydus Cadila, Bharat Biotech, Pfizer or Moderna...which is the mildest. These vaccines are reducing the severity of the infection but not the infection," he said.
Meanwhile, India`s COVID-19 vaccination coverage has crossed 95 crores with the administration of 46,57,679 doses in the last 25 hours, informed the Ministry of Health and Family welfare on Monday.
According to the provisional reports issued by the ministry at 7 am today, India has administered 95,19,84,373 vaccines so far.This has been achieved through 92,57,689 sessions. The country reported 18,132 new COVID-19 cases in the last 24 hours, which is the lowest in 215 days.