Haryana Health Minister tests positive weeks after getting Covaxin vaccine shot

Deccan Chronicle with agency inputs

Nation, Current Affairs

Bharat Biotech took to Twitter to allay any concerns over the vaccine, saying trials are based on a two-dose schedule, given 28 days apart

Haryana Health Minister Anil Vij. (PTI)

New Delhi: Haryana health minister Anil Vij, who had received one shot of the two-dose trial of Covid-19 vaccine Covaxin a fortnight ago after he offered to be a volunteer, has tested positive for the coronavirus.

Mr Vij, 67, had offered to be the first volunteer in the phase three trials for Covaxin, an indigenous potential vaccine being developed by Bharat Biotech against Covid-19. He was administered the dose on November 20 at the Civil Hospital in Ambala Cantonment, about 50 km from Chandigarh.

"I have been tested Corona positive. I am admitted in Civil Hospital Ambala Cantt. All those who have come in close contact to me are advised to get themselves tested for corona (sic)," Mr Vij, who is also the state's home minister, tweeted on Saturday.

Bharat Biotech took to Twitter on Saturday to allay any concerns over the efficacy of the vaccine, saying clinical trials are based on a two-dose schedule, given 28 days apart. The vaccine efficacy will be determined 14 days after the second dose, it said.

Bharat Biotech also said it is a double-blinded trial in phase 3 where 50 per cent will receive the vaccine and 50 per cent will receive a placebo.

Though it is not yet known whether Mr Vig received the vaccine or placebo, the company has the data and any issue will be reported to the ethics committee of CDSCO-DCGI data safety monitoring board.

The Hyderabad-based vaccine maker said that in the phase 3 trials, 26,000 subjects in 25 sites are involved to determine the efficacy of Covaxin vaccine.

Stressing that experts would know better about how the vaccine works, Mr Vij told PTI over phone: "I was told that antibodies start to develop after the second dose, which is administered after 28 days of getting the first shot. And full antibodies are developed 14 days after the second dose is given. So, the complete cycle takes 42 days. In between there is no protection.”

Asked about his condition, Mr Vij said he has sore throat, fever and body ache.

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