By: Pallava Bagla
Date: August 6, 2020
Location: Faridabad, India
Corona Virus is tormenting & torturing India & the world. Scientists have unleashed a 'world war' on COVID-19 by making many candidate vaccines. India has several experimental molecules, some tested platforms with huge heritage, others like the RNA, DNA, Plasmid, and Vectored vaccine platforms that are literally untested in huge numbers, some genetically-modified candidates. Which one should you put the bets on? Dr. Gagandeep Kang, India's Vaccine Guru, the only one to have spearheaded making an indigenous vaccine candidly explains the biology, regulatory, human challenge, genetic engineering, and disease control strategies of these 20 plus candidate vaccines in a 60-minute primer for lay-persons on corona vaccines like never before to Pallava Bagla on August 6, 2020. She feels a vaccine will come. 'Corona harega, desh Jeetega'.
Prof. Gagandeep Kang talks about what is new post-lockdown - Vaccines and Antibodies."Because what appears right today might actually be wrong tomorrow".
Find the complete webinar here.
How do geopolitics affect vaccines development and distribution? Funding and distribution methods remain critical as the world waits for the COVID-19 vaccine. Listen here to Prof. Gagandeep Kang, Umang Vohra (Cipla Ltd.) and David E. Bloom (Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health) as to how global alliances are aiding these processes. The webinar "Science, Business and Vaccine Development" was organized by the India Research Center, Harvard Business School; The Lakshmi Mittal and Family South Asian Institute, Harvard University and moderated by Tarun Khanna (The Mittal Institute, Harvard University).
Will your doggo give you SARS-CoV2? Will the flu vaccine prevent COVID-19? Taking a hot bath will prevent infection. Dr. Gagandeep Kang responds to and busts some COVID-19 myths. We put together her conversation with little Ritu worried for her mother who keeps getting misinformed because of Fake News circulating through WhatsApp. The conversation is made into a comic available in
Illustrations: Yashika Kapoor
Translations: Dr. Tarun Kumar Sharma and Dr. Siuli Mitra (Hindi); Dr. Lovejeet Kaur (Punjabi)
In the wake of the pandemic, communicating timely, accurately and sensitively was identified to be of paramount significance quite early on. THSTI's communications strategy for COVID19 was built around these principles and efforts were made to ensure the measures being taken by the Government of India are communicated widely.
With the advent of COVID-19 pandemic, we are also witnessing an 'infodemic' - spread of misinformation and fear. In such times, the role of journalists, media professionals, community reporters and science and health communicators are of immense importance. THSTI has partnered with DBT/Wellcome Trust India Alliance, IAVI and Nature India to bring together a series of webinars where experts answer questions about COVID-19. The webinar provides an opportunity for media professionals and those seeking credible information on the pandemic to interact with experts to better understand COVID-19’s science and public health impacts, as well as best practices and tools of fact-checking and reporting.
The areas that we have taken up range from vaccines to virology to ethics of reporting, accurate messaging and communication without stigmatizing. Tomorrow we talk about urban and rural perspectives on impact of the pandemic on those living in the fringes of healthcare.
What do we know about the different vaccines being made for COVID-19? Does BCG work?
How does drug repurposing work and is it the way to go to have an early cure for COVID-19?
How should people with limited/no water wash hands regularly to prevent infectious diseases?
Dr. Gagandeep Kang was a panelist on three of the webinars in the series and addressed questions about SARS-CoV2, its pathogenicity, COVID-19, vaccine development, drug repositioning and public health response to the pandemic among other questions. We put together some of the key takeaways from the webinar here.
Designed by: Ankita Rathore
Gagandeep Kang, Director, THSTI, Faridabad and Shahid Jameel, CEO, DBT/Wellcome Trust India Alliance were on board as our experts to bust myths on the new coronavirus and share latest scientific and health-related information on COVID-19. The first webinar was also shared with India Science for wider outreach.
Shahid Jameel and Anant Bhan, Bioethics and Global Health expert, answered questions on virology and bioethics.
Gagandeep Kang and Gautam Menon, Professor of Physics and Biology, Ashoka University, Sonipat, answered questions on virology, COVID-19 prediction models, vaccine R&D, research opportunities and bioethics.
Soumitra Pathare, Ida Jooste and Padma Priya DVL discussed the role of language during a pandemic.
Yogesh Kalkonde, Gautam Bhan, and Divya Varma discussed the Impact of COVID-19 on those on the fringes of healthcare by getting perspectives gained through their work on rural health, social protection and vulnerabilities of migrant workers respectively.
Gagandeep Kang, Shahid Jameel, and Jacob John discussed the progress made in COVID-19 research in India and globally, and the future course of the pandemic.
Prashanth NS, Meena S Seshu, Yvette Raphael, and Vivek Anand discussed how to build bridges with and engage communities during and after the pandemic.
Vikram Patel, Lakshmi Ravikanth, Shyam Bhatt and Sumi Jain talk about mental health challenges during these times of uncertainty, provide solutions on how to cope with it, and bring in examples of how different agencies (government and non-government) are working with communities from different states of India to help them face mental health challenges.
Prof. Gagandeep Kang was also a speaker at the 2nd webinar of COVID19 Preparedness – National Cancer Grid Initiative along with Dr. Randeep Guleria, Daniel Vanderende and others and again in the 4th webinar along with Dr. K. VijayRaghavan, Dr. Shruti Tandon, and Dr. Soumitra Pathare.
Listen to the latest podcast by Bangalore International Centre, The Search for a Cure (with Dr. Gagandeep Kang) where Dr. Gagandeep Kang breaks down the challenges of developing antivirals in her interview with Pavan Srinath.
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Our human resource is our backbone. Before the pandemic spread out in India, the challenges upcoming in the near future were foreseen and awareness sessions were organized to sensitize staff and students where Dr. Gagandeep Kang (Executive Director) spoke with them and answered their queries. Staff included Administration, Technical and housekeeping.
Guidelines have been uploaded on the website for THSTI staff https://thsti.res.in/covid_resources.php