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Vaccine Hesitancy: What It Means And How We Can Tackle It, Experts Explain

How can India fight vaccination hesitancy? After the pandemic, the next big challenge for the country is to tackle – infodemic? Experts explain

Vaccine Hesitancy: What It Means And How We Can Tackle It, Experts Explain

New Delhi: Since the beginning of COVID vaccination drive in India from January 16, low turnout for vaccination shot has been the talk of the town. According to the data released by the Union Health Ministry, between Saturday and Monday, more than 3 lakh people received vaccine jab in 7,704 sessions. However, many health workers, who were to receive the vaccine, did not turn up, because of vaccine hesitancy.

Also Read: India’s COVID-19 Vaccine Drive: What Can Be The Implications Of Low Turnout And How Can They Be Overcome?

What Is Vaccination Hesitancy?

According to the World Health Organisation, vaccination hesitancy refers to the delay in acceptance or refusal of vaccines despite the availability of vaccine services. It is influenced by factors such as complacency, convenience and confidence.

So, How Can We Tackle Vaccination Hesitancy?

Till now, nearly 10 lakh beneficiaries in India have been inoculated, but growing concerns over COVID-19 vaccines safety has forced the government to reassure people and urge them to get their jab. On Thursday (January 21), the Union Health Ministry of India launched the mega awareness campaign for COVID-19 vaccination drive and urged people to make it into a mass campaign so that more and more people can get vaccines in the coming few months.

NDTV speaks with experts to discuss the common concerns causing vaccine hesitation and what the government is doing to fight it. Talking about the common hesitations or concerns with the vaccines, Dr SK Sarin, Chairman, Delhi COVID Panel said,

Hesitancy and fear only come to you from the unknown. If things are known to you, you are aware of the signs and the way vaccines have been developed, if it is a safe and effective vaccine for coronavirus, your fear will go away. Therefore it is very important that we know everything about it and knowledge plays a very big role. Secondly, if we don’t know about a particular thing, we might spread rumours and create confusion in others mind. So, the campaign by the government, which is basically an awareness campaign and urges people to get their jab when asked to, will play a very big role.

Also Read: “Feel Great After Taking My Jab”: India’s Top Cardiac Surgeon Shares His Experience On Getting The COVID-19 Vaccine

Dr Sarin further said that we doctors can become role models for everyone and added,

If the general public will see that their doctor has taken their jab and is fit and fine, they will be motivated to get vaccinated. In the next coming days, with the government, I think, it is doctors again who have to wear this cape and motivate people to get vaccinated and convinced them that the vaccines that are approved in India for fighting coronavirus are safe. Approximately 10 lakh people have been vaccinated in our country till now and this number itself is a proof that the vaccines are safe in nature. New data is also getting published in the coming few days and I think that will also help in ensuring it to the masses that the vaccines are safe for use.

On the other hand, Dr Hemant Deshmukh, Dean King Edward Memorial Hospital, Mumbai spoke about the fear among the healthcare workers community for the vaccines and said,

Doctors who want to take the shot are worried because the vaccines lack scientific data, but in coming few days it will come and I am certain after seeing that data doctors and healthcare workers will put their arm forward. One thing is very clear, if you allow healthcare workers to decide and develop trust with the vaccine, I think it will work as a step forward and will help in ensuring that the COVID19 vaccination programme is successful.

NDTV – Dettol Banega Swasth India campaign is an extension of the five-year-old Banega Swachh India initiative helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. It aims to spread awareness about critical health issues facing the country. In wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (WaterSanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign highlights the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children to prevent maternal and child mortality, fight malnutrition, stunting, wasting, anaemia and disease prevention through vaccines. Importance of programmes like Public Distribution System (PDS), Mid-day Meal Scheme, POSHAN Abhiyan and the role of Aganwadis and ASHA workers are also covered. Only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and become a Swasth or healthy India. The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollutionwaste managementplastic banmanual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene

World

24,20,23,922Cases
20,36,06,535Active
3,34,95,808Recovered
49,21,579Deaths
Coronavirus has spread to 195 countries. The total confirmed cases worldwide are 24,20,23,922 and 49,21,579 have died; 20,36,06,535 are active cases and 3,34,95,808 have recovered as on October 21, 2021 at 4:33 am.

India

3,41,27,450 18,454Cases
1,78,831 733Active
3,34,95,808 17,561Recovered
4,52,811 160Deaths
In India, there are 3,41,27,450 confirmed cases including 4,52,811 deaths. The number of active cases is 1,78,831 and 3,34,95,808 have recovered as on October 21, 2021 at 2:30 am.

State Details

State Cases Active Recovered Deaths
Maharashtra

65,96,645 1,825

29,333 1,075

64,27,426 2,879

1,39,886 21

Kerala

48,79,790 11,150

83,333 2,476

47,69,373 8,592

27,084 82

Karnataka

29,84,484 462

9,103 26

29,37,405 479

37,976 9

Tamil Nadu

26,90,633 1,170

14,058 268

26,40,627 1,418

35,948 20

Andhra Pradesh

20,61,810 523

5,566 88

20,41,924 608

14,320 3

Uttar Pradesh

17,10,058 11

112 6

16,87,048 17

22,898

West Bengal

15,82,813 867

7,491 63

15,56,315 795

19,007 9

Delhi

14,39,466 25

310 12

14,14,066 37

25,090

Odisha

10,36,532 559

4,387 106

10,23,849 451

8,296 2

Chhattisgarh

10,05,735 34

185 3

9,91,979 36

13,571 1

Rajasthan

9,54,393 1

38 0

9,45,401 1

8,954

Gujarat

8,26,340 14

176 9

8,16,077 22

10,087 1

Madhya Pradesh

7,92,709 9

82 3

7,82,104 6

10,523

Haryana

7,71,116 15

133 7

7,60,934 8

10,049

Bihar

7,26,036 3

30 12

7,16,345 15

9,661

Telangana

6,69,556 191

3,968 28

6,61,646 162

3,942 1

Assam

6,07,427 308

3,610 25

5,97,859 282

5,958 1

Punjab

6,02,113 32

232 16

5,85,331 15

16,550 1

Jharkhand

3,48,486 25

142 14

3,43,209 11

5,135

Uttarakhand

3,43,773 8

176 1

3,36,199 6

7,398 1

Jammu And Kashmir

3,31,299 78

800 3

3,26,070 80

4,429 1

Himachal Pradesh

2,21,936 110

1,394 46

2,16,815 64

3,727

Goa

1,77,706 47

597 23

1,73,755 70

3,354

Puducherry

1,27,521 42

461 29

1,25,208 71

1,852

Manipur

1,22,970 71

1,360 2

1,19,706 66

1,904 3

Mizoram

1,15,207 741

10,263 505

1,04,548 1,243

396 3

Tripura

84,351 2

95 7

83,440 9

816

Meghalaya

83,158 79

761 21

80,958 58

1,439

Chandigarh

65,312 2

24 1

64,468 3

820

Arunachal Pradesh

55,043 12

138 7

54,625 19

280

Sikkim

31,800 17

175 6

31,232 22

393 1

Nagaland

31,659 18

255 8

30,728 10

676

Ladakh

20,886 3

34 0

20,644 3

208

Dadra And Nagar Haveli

10,676

2 2

10,670 2

4

Lakshadweep

10,365

0 0

10,314

51

Andaman And Nicobar Islands

7,646

7 1

7,510 1

129

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