The UK’s Department of Health and Social Care says this will require further clarifications
A health worker inoculates a woman with a dose of the Covishield vaccine in New Delhi on Wednesday. Pic/AFP
There is confusion over the UK government’s vaccine recognition process for Indian travellers as even though Oxford/AstraZeneca Covishield, the India-manufactured Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine, is on an updated international travel advisory, India is not yet on a list of 17 approved countries.
The UK’s Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) said on Wednesday that they are unable to confirm this and will require further clarifications even though the advisory states, “Formulations of the four listed vaccines, such as AstraZeneca Covishield, AstraZeneca Vaxzevria and Moderna Takeda, qualify as approved vaccines.”
There has been widespread condemnation of the Serum Institute of India manufactured vaccines not being included in a list of eligible Covid-19 vaccines recognised under Britain’s reviewed international travel norms, effective from October 4.
From October 4, England’s current traffic light system of red, amber and green countries based on levels of Covid-19 risk will be scrapped and replaced with one red list only. However, there is a lack of clarity over whether Indians vaccinated with any vaccines in India — including Covishield — fall within the UK’s eligibility criteria or not.
“We have to see how it goes. But if we do not get satisfaction we would be within our rights to impose reciprocal measures,” Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla said in response to a question on the issue in New Delhi on Tuesday.
India’s daily Covid deaths rise
India reported 26,964 new Covid cases in the last 24 hours which remained below the 30,000 mark for the second consecutive day, Union Health Ministry’s data showed on Wednesday. However, the country witnessed a spike in daily Covid-related deaths as 383 fatalities were registered in the last 24 hours. The total Covid fatality in the country has risen to 4,45,768. The fatality rate remained at 1.33 per cent.
Will Karnataka allow theatres to run full house?
The Karnataka government is contemplating to allow theatres and multiplexes in the state to run full house. A decision will be taken in this regard in a day or two. K Sudhakar, Minister for Health, on Tuesday said that the government is concerned about the plight of theatre owners, exhibitors as they are suffering huge losses due to the Covid restrictions. The film industry too suffered financial setbacks. “We are positive and will take a decision in two to three days after consulting Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai,” he said.
WHO thanks India over vax shipments
World Health Organisation (WHO) chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus on Wednesday thanked Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya for announcing resumption of Covid-19 vaccine shipments to the COVAX global pool in October. COVAX is an initiative for equitable global access to Covid-19 vaccines. “Thank you Health Minister @mansukhmandviya for announcing #India will resume crucial #Covid19 vaccine shipments to #COVAX in October. This is an important development in support of reaching the 40% vaccination target in all countries by the end of the year. #VaccinEquity,” Ghebreyesus said in a tweet.
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