KATHMANDU – The government has already sent diplomatic notes to the countries conducting the third phase of trials of the vaccine against COVID-19, for obtaining the vaccine.
Minister for Health and Population Bhanubhakta Dhakal gave out this information. He said the diplomatic notes have been sent to India, China, America, United Kingdom, Germany, Russia and Australia, among the countries that have been conducting third stage of trails on development of vaccine against the coronavirus infection.
He said the government was working on a war footing to resolving the problems created by the coronavirus pandemic on the basis of the state’s capacity and means and resources at its disposal.
“Reaching out to the large number of patients in home isolation and taking care of them is the major challenge at present. One thousand three hundred and sixty two people have already died due to COVID-19 in the country so far while 224 thousand 78 persons are infected. The number of active infected cases is 17 thousand 859.
80 percent of cases asymptomatic
It is said 80 percent of the infected cases are asymptomatic and doctors warn that because of this reason people have the misconception that coronavirus infection is ‘not so serious’.
Eighty two percent of the people with active infection are in home isolation at present. RT-PCR tests have been carried out on more than one million 650 thousand people till date. Arrangement for conducting PCR tests has been made at 76 places.
The government says the Acts and Regulations have been revised for ensuring the smooth supply of medicines. The government has given primary priority to the work of managing beds with oxygen supply and medicines at the maximum number of hospitals.
There is plan of bringing the vaccine against COVID-19 into the country through government-to-government agreement or through facilitation by organisations as the World Health Organization (WHO).
Vaccine ensured to 20 percent population
Meanwhile, spokesperson at the Ministry of Health and Population, Dr Jageshwor Gautam said that a vaccine against coronavirus infection has been ensured to 20 percent of the total population.
“The government is vigorously working so that our citizens can also get the vaccine when citizens of other countries start using it. Vaccine has not been developed for children below 12 years at present. The trail of vaccine said to be used by people above 12 years has entered the third stage,” he said.
Although efforts are underway to develop 140 types of vaccine against COVID-19 in various countries of the world, only 10 types of vaccine have reached the third stage of trial. It is estimated that vaccine would be available in the market by March next year.
However, the impact of the vaccine, its cost and its supply has not been ascertained as yet. An organization called GAVI-Covax has given word to supply the vaccine at 20 percent subsidised price of the cost that covers the cost of the vaccines for 20 percent of the population. It is said the cost for the vaccine is approximately Rs 60 billion.