India is set to launch the world’s largest vaccination drive against Covid-19 on Saturday with record 300,000 health care workers across the country scheduled to get vaccinated on the first day.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will launch the pan India rollout of COVID-19 vaccination drive tomorrow morning through video conferencing, according to an official statement issued last evening.
Ahead of the countrywide vaccination programme, the Indian government has already delivered adequate doses of both “Covishield and Covaxin” vaccines manufactured by Serum Institute of India (SII) and Bharat Biotech Ltd, to all states and Union Territories (UTs).
A total of 3006 session sites across all states and Union Territories (UTs) will be virtually connected during the launch. Around 100 beneficiaries will be vaccinated at each session site on the inaugural day.
This vaccination programme is based on the principles of priority groups to be vaccinated and health care workers, both in government and private sectors including ICDS workers, will receive the vaccine during this phase.
The vaccination programme will use Co-WIN, an online digital platform developed union health ministry to facilitate real time information of vaccine stocks, storage temperature and individualized tracking of beneficiaries for COVID-19 vaccine.
This digital platform will assist programme managers across all levels while conducting vaccination sessions.
Meanwhile, the Indian government has circulated the dos and don’ts for vaccination to the states on Thursday.
According to the circular, vaccination is allowed only for those who are above the age of 18 years. Women who are pregnant or not sure of their pregnancy and lactating mothers should not receive the vaccine.
The government also said that interchangeability of vaccine is not permitted. The second dose of the vaccine should also be of the one that was administered as first dose.
Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) on January 3 approved two coronavirus vaccines-“Covishield and Covaxin”- for their “restricted emergency use”.
Covishield is jointly developed by Oxford University and AstraZeneca and “Covaxin” by Bharat Biotech Ltd.