Amid speculations over Covid-19 vaccines, a top official from the Indian Medical Association (IMA) has reportedly claimed that a vaccine would reach usable stage only after 2020.
“A usable vaccine to cure COVID-19 and bringing the same to good use would go beyond 2020,” a news agency quoted an Dr V K Monga, IMA Board of Hospitals Chairman as saying.
He said that developing a vaccine for viral infections is a longer process as firstly, these infections have shorter immunity and secondly, viruses mutate faster, so this makes developers clueless as to which mutation is there in which part of the country.
Dr Monga further said for developing a vaccine there are multiple stages and steps.
“Developing a vaccine is not a political decision, it involves a lot of steps and procedures,” he said.
“First, we isolate the virus then you develop an antidote to that, followed by animal testing and then on human volunteers. Secondly, you see the efficacy, toxicity and then its longevity as to how long it sustains,” Monga said.
He said since, the viral infections have shorter immunity; a vaccine with a longer effect is to be seen, secondly, we have to see that it has no side effect and thirdly, viruses mutate faster and hence, it has to be seen that the vaccine is effective on most of the mutants as we don’t know which mutated virus is present in which part of the country.
Speaking about the rise in the recovery rate, Dr Monga said that in this particular disease, approximately 80 per cent of the people are recovering on their own.
“These patients will automatically recover. Home isolation is a good thing,” he said.
Monga said people using masks and adhering to social distancing norms is also increasing recovery.
However, he clarified that plasma therapy, which is being seen as the only solution to COVID-19 in place of the absence of the vaccine, can’t minimise the need of a vaccine.