New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Amid the debates over the need for the booster shot of the COVID-19 vaccine, the Union Health Ministry on Thursday reiterated that the need of the hour is to give two doses of COVID-19 vaccine to every adult in the country as soon as possible.

COVID-19 booster shot -- a third dose of the vaccine -- is being administered in several countries including the USA, Britain, Israel, Germany and France, to older adults and people with weak immune systems. However, the booster shot is not currently a need in India, said the Health Ministry.

Addressing a press briefing in Delhi, ICMR DG Dr Balram Bhargava, as quoted by news agency ANI, said, “the call of the hour is to give the two-dose vaccination/full vaccination covering the entire adult population. The talk of booster dose is not pertinent at the moment”.

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The Union Health Ministry, had earlier this month said that the COVID-19 booster shot is not the central theme in scientific discussion as well as in the public health domain at the moment and getting the two doses to remain the main priority.

"We need to remember one thing very clearly that booster dose is not the central theme at the moment in the scientific discussion as well as in the public health domain. Getting the two doses remains the major priority," Bhargava had said.

The World Health Organization (WHO) said on Aug. 18 that current data do not indicate a need for booster shots, and has repeatedly called for a delay, arguing that the most vulnerable people worldwide should be fully vaccinated before high-income countries deploy a top-up.

Posted By: Talibuddin Khan