Coronavirus India Updates: Active Cases Rise As Government Teases Vaccine Phase Two
Active cases of Covid-19 in India rose for the sixth time in eight days amid fears of a second wave of infections, even as the government announced the second phase of vaccinations.
Authorities reported 16,738 new cases in 24 hours according to the health ministry's update as of 8 a.m on Feb. 25. That’s higher than the 11,799 recoveries in the same period, taking active cases above 1.5 lakh again.
These infections now account for 1.37% of the total Covid-19 cases confirmed by the authorities since the pandemic reached India in January 2020.
On Thuesday, the ministry reported 138 deaths -- most in a month -- with the total tally at over 1.56 lakh. This accounts for 1.42% of the more than 1.1 crore coronavirus cases detected in India.
- Total number of confirmed coronavirus cases: 1,10,46,914
- Active cases: 1,51,708
- Cured/discharged/migrated: 1,07,38,501
- Deaths: 1,56,705
- Number of fresh cases in last 24 hours: 16,738
- One-day recoveries: 11,799
- One-day deaths: 138
India has administered vaccines to 1,26,71,163 healthcare and frontline workers with more than 5 lakh of them receiving their shots in the last 24 hours. The government also announced that senior citizens and those over 45 years of age with comorbidities will be able to get vaccinated for free at government facilities from March 1 and for a charge at many private hospitals.
Global Vaccine Update
Vaccination programs are rolling out across Asia this week, from Hong Kong to South Korea. Johnson & Johnson’s Covid-19 vaccine is safe and effective, U.S. regulators said, a milestone toward giving Americans the first shot to work in a single dose.
The shot made by Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE was overwhelmingly effective against the virus in a study, confirming earlier reports and prompting experts to say that immunizations can end the pandemic.
China donated 200,000 more doses to Zimbabwe, while Ghana received the first batch of vaccines shipped through the World Health Organization-backed Covax initiative.
More than 218 million vaccine shots have been administered worldwide.
Senior Citizens, 45-Plus With Comorbidities Can Get Covid-19 Vaccine From March 1
Everyone above 60 years of age and those over 45 years with comorbidities will be able to get Covid-19 vaccine from March 1 for free at government facilities and for a charge at many private hospitals, the government said on Wednesday.
The Cabinet, which met under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, took the decision on the next phase of the vaccination, Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar said at a media briefing here.
"The second phase of the world's largest vaccination drive will start from Monday in which anybody above 60 years, that may not be less than 10 crore people in the country, and 45 years plus with co-morbidities will be given vaccines in 10,000 government medical facilities and also over 20,000 private hospitals," he said.
"Whoever goes to the government centre will be administered vaccine free of cost. Indian government will pay for them. The government will purchase the necessary doses and will send them to all the states," Javadekar said.
Those who want to get vaccination from private hospitals will have to pay, but the amount will be decided by the health ministry within the next three-four days as they are in discussions with manufacturers as well as hospitals, he said.