Jaipur: 94-year-old Dr Premchand Dandiya was among the 12,258 persons who received the Covid-19 vaccine in Rajasthan on Saturday, the first day of the immunisation exercise.
Dr Dandiya, a retired professor from the SMS Medical College, would be among the oldest persons vaccinated in the country.
Dr Dandiya reposed his faith in the vaccine. He said “I will probably live for another 3-4 years. I would rather get vaccinated than die of any disease. I can say with certainty the vaccine is safe and I am getting vaccinated to give this message to people,” he said.
Dr Dandiya who retired from SMS Medical College in 1978 but is serving as professor emeritus at SMS hospital, said college principal Dr Sudhir Bhandari asked him to get vaccinated. Dr Bhandari was the first to get the vaccination shot in the state.
As per a health department report, 12,258 persons were vaccinated in Rajasthan as against the target of 16,613. As many as 21 beneficiaries experienced minor adverse effects from the vaccine.
As per the report, all the planned 167 sessions were held in the state. However, the target of immunising 16,613 persons was not achieved as only 12,258 persons received the jab.
Health department officials said the target could not be met as some beneficiaries did not turn up due to different reasons.
The state also saw 21 cases of AEFI or after effect of immunisation but officials said these were mild effects such as headache, bodyache or nausea and all the beneficiaries were fine.
The state’s vaccination drive was launched by chief minister Ashok Gehlot at noon after the prime minister inaugurated the rollout of the world’s largest immunisation exercise in the morning.
Rajasthan has received 5.63 lakh doses of Covaxin, manufactured by Bharat Biotech, and Covishield manufactured by the Serum Institute of India. In the first phase, 4.5 lakh health workers will be vaccinated.
Health minister Raghu Sharma said the state has identified 3,345 government medical institutions and 2,969 private institutions as session sites for the first phase. Data of around 6 lakh beneficiaries has been uploaded for COVID-19 vaccination on COVIN software till January 14.
The beneficiaries include health workers of government, private and union ministries. There are 4,87,381 beneficiaries of the state government and private institutions and 6,758 beneficiaries from the union ministries and 1,01,761 frontline workers.
Beneficiaries will be given the first dose of 0.5ml and the second dose of 0.5ml of the same company will be administered after 28 days of the first dose.
The vaccination will be done daily at 161 session places till January 31 and after that it will be done on five days in a week so that other health services are not affected.
The government has trained 5,626 teams of health workers including doctors, ASHA workers, anganbari workers, swasthya mitras, paramedics for the vaccination drive.
The state has set up three state-level, seven division level and 34 district level vaccine stores and 2,444 cold chain points have been made at community and primary health centres.