Vaccine Shortage Causes 35% Slump in Daily Jabs

Crisil says the test-positivity rate has dropped to 13.1 per cent with the recovery rate rising to 88.7 per cent

Vaccine Shortage Causes 35% Slump in Daily Jabs
Vaccine Shortage Causes 35% Slump in Daily Jabs
PTI - 25 May 2021

According to a report, daily vaccination has dropped to 980 per million people as of May 23, down from 1,455 per million a week earlier and against a global average of 3,564 per million because of vaccine mismanagement and consequent shortage.

The only saving grace is the ongoing decline in pandemic caseloads, which have been heading downward for the second week in a running, with daily cases falling 22 per cent sequentially in the week ended May 23, faster than the 15 per cent drop the week before, as per Crisil.

This suggests that the infection rate peaked on May 6, when 4.14 lakh cases were registered across the country. The average number of new cases per day is now 2.5 lakh, down from 3.3 lakh in the week ending May 16.

More importantly, as of Tuesday, the daily caseload has dipped below 2 lakh, with only 1,96,427 new Coronavirus infections reported in the previous 24 hours.

With vaccine availability maintaining a national bottleneck, vaccination speed has been steadily declining, with daily vaccinations falling to 980 per million persons on May 23 from 1,455 per million a week earlier, a decrease of almost 35 per cent. As per the report, the global average is 3,564 per million.

Maharashtra, Gujarat, and Delhi have vaccinated the maximum proportion of their populations among the three categories but even their rate of vaccination in these states has slowed in May. Vaccination will be slowed even more because the vaccine will take longer to become available.

The total tally of Covid cases rose to 2,69,48,874, while the death toll increased to 3,07,231 as of Tuesday.

On August 7, 2020, the infection reached a total of 20 lakh, followed by 30 lakh on August 23, 40 lakh on September 5, and 50 lakh on September 16. It hit the 60 lakh level on September 28, the 70 lakh mark on October 11, the 80 lakh mark on October 29, the 90 lakh mark on November 20, and the one-crore mark on December 19, 2020. According to data from the Union health ministry, the country passed the 2 crore mark on May 4, 2021.

According to Crisil, while daily cases decreased, testing increased by 11 per cent last week, lowering the test positive rate to 13.1 per cent from 18.8 per cent the week before. In addition, the recovery rate increased to 88.7 per cent on May 23 from 84.8 per cent the week before.

According to the research, the country may have reached the peak of the second wave on May 6 due to a decrease in new infections, positivity rates, and active cases, as well as an improving recovery rate. States like Tamil Nadu, Odisha, and Assam are still gripped by the virus, while Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, and Rajasthan have experienced the sharpest drops, according to the report.

The economic impact of the second wave on states will be influenced by the caseload, type of lockdowns, the structural composition of output (across sectors/regions), and above all, the pace of vaccination, according to the report. States with a higher reliance on services and a decreased pace of vaccination will be more fragile and vulnerable.