Covid Vaccines: Several states in India have run out of vaccines against Covid Vaccines, exacerbating a dire second wave of infections that has left hospitals and morgues overflowing while families scramble for increasingly scarce medicines and oxygen.
India Running Short Of Covid Vaccines
“Come back to us. How will we live without you?” wailed Aanchal Sharma and her mother-in-law over the lifeless body of her husband, waiting like so many others for their turn at a crematorium on the outskirts of New Delhi.
In the parking lot, more than 10 ambulances containing corpses lined up while workers cleared ashes from pyres that had spilled over from the main cremation area. Second only to the United States in total infections, India has reported more than 300,000 new cases daily for nine days in a row, hitting another global record of 386,452 on Friday.
Total deaths have surpassed 200,000 and cases are nearing 19 million – nearly 8 million since February alone as virulent new strains have combined with “super-spreader” events such as political rallies and religious festivals. Medical experts say real numbers may be five to 10 times higher than the official tally. Patients have been begging for spaces in hospitals while oxygen tanks are scarce and prized.
India Running Short Covid Vaccines
Despite being the world’s biggest producer of covid vaccines, India now does not have enough for itself – undermining a plan to ramp up and widen inoculation from Saturday. Only about 9% of its 1.4 billion people have had a dose. “I registered to get a slot 28 days before, but now they are saying there are no vaccines,” complained Jasmin Oza on Twitter.
India has struggled to increase capacity beyond 80 million doses a month due to lack of raw materials and a fire at the Serum Institute, which makes the AstraZeneca vaccine.
Authorities in the financial capital Mumbai said inoculation centres were closing for three days, while Delhi’s chief minister Arvind Kejriwal told citizens not to show up for vaccinations on Saturday as doses had not yet arrived. Karnataka state, home to tech hub Bengaluru, postponed its new vaccination drive for adults that was to start on Saturday.