Kohima: Nearly all the deaths in Nagaland due to COVID-19 after February have been of people who were not fully vaccinated, the state’s health and family welfare department said. 

The department’s data showed that out of 375 COVID-19 deaths in the state from February, only one patient who passed away was fully vaccinated, and two weeks had passed after the second dose. 

Another patient died after two doses, but the department informed it was before the completion of two weeks after vaccination.

“The vaccine also provides very significant protection even by one dose after two weeks of vaccination,” it said. The health department said though breakthrough infections are happening (positivity after two weeks of the second dose), “the vaccine is very effective against severe and deaths as demonstrated by clinical trials and in real-time.”

Nagaland began the first phase of vaccination along with the rest of the country on January 16, with healthcare workers being prioritised for vaccination. 

The health department informed that so far, no active healthcare worker in COVID-19 hospitals has succumbed to the virus despite being at the highest risk of exposure as most healthcare workers have been fully vaccinated.

As of Saturday, a total of 4,02,778 doses— 3,47,415 first and 55,363-second doses of the vaccine has been administered in Nagaland. A total of 10,365 healthcare workers, 28,344 frontline workers, 16,653 persons above 45 years and one person between 18-44 years, has received both doses of the vaccine.

It informed that approximately 32% of eligible beneficiaries have been by the first dose. 63,586 doses that were administered in the past week is the highest dose administered in a single week.

In 2020, armed forces and security personnel constituted about 39% of all confirmed cases. Armed forces and security personnel were the first to be vaccinated in huge numbers. The health department said that this year, security personnel constitute only 5% of confirmed cases—an indicator that COVID-19 vaccines “not only prevent severe diseases but also reduce transmission”.

It added that utmost care has to be taken until at least 90% of eligible beneficiaries receive the vaccine because children cannot be vaccinated as of now. It also appealed to all to strictly continue wearing masks, maintain physical distance, avoid crowds and take maximum care in closed spaces.

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