The coronavirus precautions that have been put in place owing to the pandemic are here to stay in the long run; people would still have to wear masks post the arrival and availability of vaccines, said chief professor Balram Bhargava of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).
Speaking at a webinar titled at Lucknow's King George Medical University on the topic of 'Changing paradigms in Covid-19 management' Bhargava said that India is progressing rapidly in the development of vaccines.
"We have a target to provide vaccine(s) to 30 crore people by July next year. The future course of action will be decided after that. India will develop a vaccine, not just for itself but for 60 percent of the developing nations. Twenty four manufacturing units and 19 firms will be engaged in developing a Covid-19 vaccine," Hindustan Times quoted Bhargava as saying.
Masks are here to stay because they work like a vaccine, a "fabric vaccine" that plays a crucial role in keeping recovered patients safe, he added. "Mask is like a fabric vaccine. We cannot ignore the contribution made by masks in stopping the spread of Covid-19. We are working on vaccines, five candidates are undergoing
trial in India. Out of these, two are being developed by India which three are from abroad. But vaccines won't be enough to end Covid-19. We will have to keep following health and safety protocols."
As far as the development of vaccines is concerned, Prime Minister Narendra Modi reviewed the manufacturing processes of coronavirus vaccines at three facilities on Saturday. He visited Zydus Biotech Park in Ahmedabad, Bharat Biotech in Hyderabad, and Serum Institute of India in Pune.