If everything goes right, COVID-19 vaccine by Sep-Oct: Reddy


Bhubaneswar: Advisor to Odisha government on health and an internationally acclaimed public health expert Dr. K Srinath Reddy on Thursday said if everything goes right, a vaccine for COVID-19 might be available by September-October.

He said numerous researches are going on around the world including India to develop vaccines for Covid 19.

He hoped that if everything goes right, a vaccine might be available by September-October.

Reddy on Thursday interacted with members of team Odisha, including Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, on Covid management.

Joining from Gurugram over video conference, Dr Reddy interacted with the Ministers and top officers of the state government on the learning outcomes from Covid till now and how to win the war against Covid.

While countries like Britain, US and Sweden suffered heavily for late lockdown initiative, small nations like Vietnam controlled the disease with social distancing, large scale testing and contact tracing, he said.

Of late, evidence is coming out that high temperature and humidity have effect on virus to make it less dangerous. However the virus is climatic temperature neutral, he clarified.

He also added that the strain of the virus in India appears to be of less virulent type.

He said that in India, vaccinations for diseases like BCG, Polio and massive use of anti-malaria drugs may be a cause of enhanced immunity and the disease may not create critical situation in India.

However, all these are hypothesis which need further research, he explained.

So for now, we must focus on social distancing, Reddy advised.

Speaking on the herd immunity idea, he said that it might prove to be very dangerous as it might lead to high fatality.

It is better, he recommended, to focus on herd protection by focusing more on disease containment and protection of vulnerable groups.

Stating that Police personnel are equally vulnerable as the healthcare workers, he advised to develop temporary physical barricades, protection of eyes by providing goggles, gloves for protection of hands  and other general protection methods to secure personnel.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik initiated the discussion by welcoming Dr Reddy.

He expressed hope that Dr Reddy’s experience and knowledge would be quite helpful in guiding us in containing the disease.

It may be informed that Dr Reddy has worked in various expert committees of the World Health Organisation. Now he is a member in the executive group of international steering committee on Covid Solidarity Group Trial of WHO.

He has written many informative articles on Covid Care, Infection Rate, Impact of Lockdown and other topics.