Dr Anthony Fauci, America’s top epidemiologist and medical adviser to President Joe Biden, said today that increasing the interval between two doses of the coronavirus vaccine puts the risk of infection with new virus variants. He said this while talking to NDTV.
He also said that the coronavirus’s delta variant countries have to worry because it is more contagious.
What did Dr Fauchi say?
In his interview, Dr Fauci said, “The ideal interval between doses for mRNA vaccines is three weeks for the Pfizer and four for the Moderna. The problem with extending intervals is that you become vulnerable to variants. And we’ve seen that in the UK, where they extended that interval, you can get infected by the variants in that period. So we recommend staying on schedule,”
“Rapid Vaccinations Needed to Stay Ahead of Virus”
Dr Fauci stressed in the interview that people need to be vaccinated as soon as possible to stay ahead of the virus. He said that the delta variant found in India spreads more rapidly, and hence it is a matter of concern for any country in which this variant is present. He said that countries would have to do extensive preparation and vaccination to deal with this variant.
India extended the interval between doses of Covishield last month.
Last month, the Government of India increased the interval between two doses of the ‘Covishield’ vaccine of Serum Institute of India (SII) from 6-8 weeks to 12-16 weeks. This was the second time in the last two months that the spacing between doses of Covishield got increased.
The government had said that by increasing the interval between two doses, Covishield proves to be more effective, so the interval got extended.
The government decided to increase the interval between doses of Covishield when there was a severe shortage of vaccines in the country, and its decision was also seen to be linked to this shortage.
What is the status of vaccination in the country?
Since the start of the vaccination campaign on 16 January, 24,60,85,649 doses of corona vaccine have been administered across the country till Thursday. Of these, 18,65,14,773 people have received the minimum dose, while 4,62,71,709 have received both doses of the vaccine.
The pace of vaccination has picked up a bit, and now more than 3 million doses are being administered daily. On Thursday, 32,74,672 doses were administered in the country.