Who should be first vaccinated by the COVID-19 vaccine ethically!?
By Jahanbee Gupta
India must vaccinate healthcare and crucial workers first to assure no deterioration in national systems. This will also help rejuvenate the struggling economy. Many Covid-19 vaccine candidates have attained phase 3 clinical trials, and the world is hopeful that one or more candidates will clear the regulatory demands and be authorized for commercial deployment in the near future.
While the wait remains, India must look ahead and start deploying strategies for prioritization and distribution of the vaccine once it becomes ready. Although it would be ideal to immunize every individual as soon as the vaccine is approved, practically it won’t be feasible.
The production capacity will be the rate-limiting step and hence, initial supplies will be limited. Additionally, the logistics of distribution and administrative capacity of vaccines in a large country like ours could potentially cause delays in making the vaccine available to everyone. So, it may take many months until everyone is immunized.
In such a case, a plan is essential to prioritize the groups who need to be vaccinated urgently and groups who can wait until supplies increase.