More than 70% of 45+ group have got 2 shots

Ram Narayan Murthy | | Updated on: Dec 07, 2021
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But only 43.6% in the 18-44 category are fully vaccinated

Vaccinating the vast Indian population is a mammoth task and despite administering over 129 crore doses, the coverage still appears inadequate.

But an analysis of age-wise vaccination as a proportion of the population reveals that most of the country’s elderly who are willing to be vaccinated may have already received two doses of the Covid-19 vaccine.

Recent data put out by Ministry of Health show that 24.86 crore people in the 18-44 age group, 12.74 crore in the 45 to 59 years age group and 8.27 crore in the above 60 years category have received two doses of the Covid-19 vaccine.

If these numbers are used to estimate the proportion of population fully vaccinated in each age-group, those above 45 years seem to be reasonably covered. Of the people in the 45 to 59 years age-bucket, 75.3 per cent have received two vaccine doses and of the people aged over 60 years, 70.9 per cent are fully vaccinated.

The lowest coverage is in the 18-44 age cohort where only 43.6 per cent are fully vaccinated. These numbers lend comfort because the elderly are more vulnerable to the virus. The overall number for fully vaccinated population is, however, low at 34.9 per cent since vaccination is yet to commence for the population below 18 years.


Challenges ahead

While the elderly group appear reasonably secure, the Centre will continue to face a challenge in completing the vaccination programme. This is because India is a relatively young nation with 41.9 per cent people belonging to the 18-44 years age group and 36.7 per cent aged less than 18 years. Those aged above 45 years account for just 21 per cent of the population.

The numbers indicate that demand from the above 45 age-group could remain subdued going forward since most of them are already vaccinated and vaccine hesitancy will impede achieving the 100 per cent mark in any age-group.

The vaccination trends in different age groups in recent times reflects this variation in demand. Number of doses administered to the 18 to 45 age cohort has far outpaced other age groups. While this age cohort is receiving over 50 lakh vaccine doses daily, the 45-60 group is receiving roughly 14 lakh doses, and the over 60 group, around 7.5 lakh doses.

Published on December 08, 2021

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