• Monday, June 27, 2022

INDIA

Indian man claims he received 11 doses of Covid vaccine

FILE PHOTO: A health worker prepares a dose of the Covaxin vaccine at a vaccination centre in New Delhi. (Photo by SAJJAD HUSSAIN/AFP via Getty Images)

By: Pramod Thomas

AN Indian man has claimed that he received 11 doses of Covid-19 vaccine, reported the BBC.

  • Brahmdeo Mandal, 65, a retired postman, said that the jabs had helped him to get rid of aches and pains and “stay healthy”. He added that he had not suffered any adverse effects.
  • Mandal was finally stopped from taking what he claimed was his 12th jab at a camp last week.
  • According to the report, a probe is underway to find out how Mandal, who lives with his family in Madhepura district in Bihar managed to get multiple jabs.

“We have already found evidence that he took eight jabs from four places,” Amarendra Pratap Shahi, civil surgeon of Madhepura, told the BBC.

People queue up to get themselves inoculated with a dose of the Covaxin vaccine against the Covid-19 coronavirus, at a temporary vaccination centre set up inside a school in Mumbai on September 7, 2021..
People queue up to get themselves inoculated with a dose of the Covaxin vaccine against the Covid-19 coronavirus, at a temporary vaccination centre set up inside a school in Mumbai on September 7, 2021. (Photo by PUNIT PARANJPE/AFP via Getty Images)

Since vaccination began on 16 January last year, India has been mainly administering two locally-manufactured vaccines, Covishield and Covaxin. The two-dose vaccines have a gap from 12-16 weeks and four to six weeks after the first dose respectively.

Vaccination is voluntary, and more than 90,000 centres, mostly state-run, are offering jabs across the country.

The beneficiary needs to furnish identity proof – a biometric card, voter ID or driving licence, among 10 documents – to register.

The data gathered from the sites is uploaded to India’s vaccine portal, CoWin.

Early investigations had found that Mandal had managed to take “two jabs in a half-hour gap” on the same day and each of these jabs “were registered on the portal”.

“We are flummoxed how this could happen. There seems to be a portal failure happening. We are also trying to find out whether there was any negligence by people manning the vaccination centres,” Shahi was quoted as saying by the BBC.

Public health expert Chandrakant Lahariya told the BBC that the “only way” this can happen is if the vaccination data from the sites is uploaded on the portal after a long lag.

Mandal, who kept detailed handwritten notes of the dates, timings and camps, claims he received 11 doses between February and December last year.

He told the BBC that he travelled to vaccination camps across Madhepura and even to at least two neighbouring districts – one more than 100km (62 miles) away – to get the jabs. He used different identity cards to register at these sites.

Mandal said he had been a “practising quack” in his village before taking up a postman’s job and “knew a thing about diseases”.

“You will usually get these reactions after the first and the second dose. Multiple doses of these vaccines should be fairly harmless, as antibodies have already been formed and the vaccines are made up of harmless components,” Dr Lahariya told the BBC.

The vaccination numbers in Bihar are lower: 36 per cent of the adult population is fully vaccinated and 49 per cent have received at least one dose.

Eastern Eye

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