Skip to Content

Health Highlights: June 8, 2021

India to Provide Free COVID-19 Shots for All Adults

Free COVID-19 shots will be offered to all adults in India starting later this month, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced Monday.

That's a reversal of a previous policy that made states and the private sector financially responsible for vaccinating people ages 18-44, while the federal government provided free shots to people 45 and older and front-line workers, the Associated Press reported.

Although most states vaccinated those in this age group for free, they were competing for doses with the private sector, the AP reported. Experts say vaccine makers reaped more profits by selling at a higher price to the private sector, causing many states to scramble for supplies.

Under the new program, the federal government will obtain 75% of all vaccines directly from manufacturers and distribute them to the states for free, with the other 25% of vaccines to be bought by the private sector.

So far, just over 222 million COVID-19 shots have been given in India, and less than 5% of its population has been fully vaccinated, the AP reported.

Even so, businesses in two of India's largest cities were reopening as part of a phased easing of lockdown measures in several states now that the number of new infections in the country is on a steady decline.

India's capital, New Delhi, allowed businesses and shops to reopen with limited hours on Monday and its Metro, which serves the city and adjoining areas, resumed operation at 50% capacity.

The strict lockdown measures had been in place following a devastating surge in infections that began in April and lasted well into May.

Some health experts fear the restrictions are being eased too soon and there are concerns that the virus is still spreading unchecked through India's rural villages, where testing and medical care are limited.

© 2021 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Read this next

Pfizer, Moderna Vaccines Do No Harm to Male Fertility: Study

THURSDAY, June 17, 2021 -- The Pfizer and Moderna COVID vaccines pose no threat to male fertility, a finding experts hope will prompt more men to get vaccinated. Researchers...

Hand Sanitizer Vapors Can Cause Nausea, Dizziness

THURSDAY, June 17, 2021 -- The coronavirus pandemic has had an unexpected side effect — a wave of bad reactions to alcohol-based hand sanitizers. Vapors from the products...

Health Highlights: June 17, 2021

CureVac's COVID-19 Vaccine Only 47% Effective CureVac's COVID-19 vaccine was only 47% effective in a clinical trial, according to preliminary results released Wednesday that...

More News Resources

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Whatever your topic of interest, subscribe to our newsletters to get the best of in your inbox.