The Centre today reviewed the ongoing vaccination drive which has been carried out through out the country that began on January 16. Rajesh Bhushan, Union Health Secretary and Dr. R S Sharma, Chairman of Empowered Group on Technology and Data Management to combat COVID-19 and member, National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration of COVID-19 reviewed the status of the vaccination drive.
The Union Health secretary highlighted some major points for the state governments after reviewing the drive.
The secretary said that states need to ensure all beneficiaries who have taken the first dose are prioritised for the second doses. He stressed on vaccinating those beneficiaries who are due to take the second jab of the vaccination.
It was advised that states can reserve at least 70% of the Vaccines supplied to them from Government of India channel (free of cost) for second dose vaccination and remaining 30% for first dose.
He suggested the states to undertake awareness campaign for reinforcing the importance of complete vaccination with two doses of the vaccine.
The states who have ensured high coverage of priority groups - aged 45+, FLW and HCW and the others, Rajesh Bhushan urged states to ensure that priority groups are vaccinated. He said that the next allocation for the period 15 to 31st May will be conveyed to them on 14th May. Besides, he said that states can utilize the information regarding dose allocation for next 15 days to plan their vaccination sessions.
Mr Bhushan also urged the state governments to reduce vaccination wastage as he pointed that there were many states which still needed to substantially reduce the wastage.
Further he briefed the states about procurement from the ‘Other than Government of India’ (OGoI) channel which has been allowed in the Liberalised Phase-III Strategy of Vaccination. For the payments of the vaccines, he advised the state governments to constitute a dedicated team at State level of 2 or 3 senior officers to coordinate with vaccine manufacturers on a daily basis and secure state govt supplies promptly.
The CoWIN platform is also being modified to better reflect the changing needs of the vaccination exercise. The states can download a second dose due report to better plan the completion of vaccination of the target groups.