The Karnataka Association of Resident Doctors (KARD) has demanded the state government to allow the resident doctors to choose between the two vaccines- Covaxin and Covishield for COVID-19 that will be administered to them.
The resident doctors said they feel discriminated, as many centres in Karnataka have been receiving Covishield whereas the resident doctors are receiving Covaxin.
KARD has submitted a letter to Health and Medical Education Minister K Sudhakar where the doctors said that "the undertaking and the discrepancies in the distribution of the vaccine sound very doubtful and the resident doctors are wary in getting vaccinated."
Only district hospitals in Chikkamagaluru, Hassan, Ballari, Shivamogga, Chamarajanagar, and Davangere are administering Covaxin as of now.
The letter further added, "Resident doctors from medical colleges at Shivamogga, Hassan, Chamarajnagar, and Ballari added that the matter is of great concern as the government decided to inject vaccine whose phase-III results are yet to be declared."
Dr Dayanand Sagar, President of KARD, said that before receiving Covaxin "we have been made to take the undertaking stating that the clinical efficacy of Covaxin is yet to be established." He condemned the usage of Covaxin "on a trial basis" on healthcare workers.
The 'COVID-19 Vaccination Screening and Consent Form' shared by Dayanand Sagar with The Logical Indian said, "The clinical efficacy of COVAXIN is yet to be established, and it is still being studied in phase 3 clinical trials."
He said, "Further, the undertaking made to sign by us is worded suspiciously. Instead, healthcare workers should be given an option to choose a vaccine. The government should administer vaccines that have passed at least the interim analysis stage," reported The Indian Express.
He explained that people prefer Covishield than Covaxin as the latter's interim analysis report is not available.
However, Minister Sudhakar said that both the vaccines are "reliable" as the Drugs Controller General of India has given the clearance to both of them. "Healthcare workers can hence take Covaxin without any apprehensions," he said.