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No Guidelines For Booster Dose Of Covid-19 Vaccine; Present Priority Is Full Vaccination: Centre Tells Delhi High Court

Nupur Thapliyal
14 Dec 2021 6:33 AM GMT
No Guidelines For Booster Dose Of Covid-19 Vaccine; Present Priority Is Full Vaccination: Centre Tells Delhi High Court
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The Central Government has informed the Delhi High Court that the current priority of the National Covid-19 Vaccination Program is to cover the entire eligible population with full vaccination including two doses, and that presently there are no guidelines regarding administration of booster doses. It said that the two expert bodies namely National Technical Advisory Group on...

The Central Government has informed the Delhi High Court that the current priority of the National Covid-19 Vaccination Program is to cover the entire eligible population with full vaccination including two doses, and that presently there are no guidelines regarding administration of booster doses.

It said that the two expert bodies namely National Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (NTAGI) and National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for COVID-19 (NEGVAC) have not issued any guidelines for administration of the widely anticipated booster dose, as of now.

The development came in light of a recent order seeking Centre's response with regard to the administration of booster dose of Covid-19 vaccine and the timeline within which the same is proposed to be rolled out, if at all necessary to be administered.

In the short affidavit filed on behalf of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, it has been submitted thus:

"It is humbly submitted that the NTAGI and NEGVAC are deliberating and considering scientific evidences related to dose schedule of Covid-19 vaccines as well as the need and justification of booster doses."

The Centre has further submitted that the current knowledge about duration of immunity offered by Covid- 19 vaccines in India is limited and the same will clearly be known over a period of time only.

A bench of Justice Vipin Sanghi and Justice Jasmeet Singh had earlier stressed upon the need and efficacy of the booster dose for those who have been completely vaccinated against the virus.

The Court had taken note of other foreign countries including the USA and Europe which have permitted and are advocating the administration of a booster dose

It had also said that the level of antibodies in a person's body having been completely vaccinated fall with the passage of time and that the said aspect was raising a lot of concerns in the minds of people at large, particularly those falling in the old age bracket and those suffering from other diseases.

Case Title: Rakesh Malhotra v. GNCTD & Ors.

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