Only 1 pc population in J&K vaccinated against COVID-19 so far: DAK
Doctors Association Kashmir (DAK) on Tuesday said that only one per cent of the population in Jammu and Kashmir has been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 so far.
“That means most of the people are still susceptible to COVID-19 infection,” DAK President and influenza expert Dr Nisar ul Hassan said.
“As per the vaccination data from Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, J&K has administered the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine to 6,34,953 people as on March 30, 2021. The figure represents 5 per cent of J&K’s 1.25 crore population. Full vaccination (both doses) has been given to 1, 42,895 people which represent 1 per cent of the population,” he said.
The DAK president said that the authorities need to vaccinate around 70 per cent of the population to bring an end to the ongoing public health crisis. “When enough people are vaccinated, virus can’t find any host to survive, replicate and move on. This is how pandemic will subside,” he said.
Dr Hassan said but with current vaccination rate, it will take years to a decade to reach the goal. “Vaccine hesitancy is a cause of major concern,” he said.
The DAK president said that people are not coming forward for the vaccine. Misinformation and wrong perceptions about the vaccine are keeping people away from the vaccine. “Another reason why the goal can’t be achieved is because children who constitute a huge proportion of the population are not vaccinated,” he said.
“There are around 4.8 million children in JK who cannot be vaccinated. Vaccine is the only way to stop the pandemic,” Dr Hassan said.
“In order to get back to normal, we need enough people to get vaccinated. The sooner we get more people vaccinated, the sooner we start reliving our lives,” he said.
He said the best way to circumvent Covid-19 variants is to continue to vaccinate as many people as quickly as possible. “If we leave a large number of the population unimmunized, we will not be able to break the chain of infection and pandemic will linger on. And, we will continue to have fresh waves of Covid-19 infection,” he added.