India is slated to expand it's COVID-19 vaccination drive from Monday, with senior citizens and those with comorbidities now eligible for inoculation. As per the guidelines released by the Centre, people will have to register via one of three methods - advance, on-site self-registration and facilitated cohort registration for senior citizens who are willing to participate in the vaccination drive.
In this new phase, approximately 27 crore people are eligible for vaccination. For those between the ages of 45 and 59, a medical certificate signed by a registered practitioner is necessary. The ministry has specified 20 comorbidities that make people in this age bracket eligible for vaccination. This includes heart failure with hospital admission in past year, moderate or severe valvular heart disease, coronary artery disease, CT/ MRI-documented stroke, diabetes of over 10 years or with complications, hypertension, end-stage kidney disease on haemodialysis and diagnosis of any solid cancer on or after 2000 or any ongoing cancer therapy.
Two vaccines - Covishield and Covaxin will be used during this phase, and similar to the earlier drive, people will not be able to choose their vaccine. However, the flexibility of choosing their vaccination site might help people pick their preferred vaccine.
Vaccines will now be made available with private hospitals across the states. Here, prices have been capped at Rs. 250. More specifically, it will cost up to Rs. 150 per dose of vaccine and Rs. 100 service charge can be added. Note that those getting inoculated at government hospitals will be getting the vaccine free of cost.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi gets vaccinated
The PM received the first dose of BharatBiotech's Covaxin on Monday. The dose was administered by an official at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), and Modi later shared a picture of the same.
"I appeal to all those who are eligible to take the vaccine. Together, let us make India COVID-19 free!" he tweeted.
Registering for vaccination via Co-WIN app or Arogya Setu
While this is not the only way one can register for vaccination, it is perhaps the most convenient. Registration on the government portal will open at 9:00 am on Monday. Beneficiaries can avail on-site registrations wherein they can walk into identified centres, get themselves registered and get vaccinated.
People can book a slot between 9 am and 3 pm for that day, or for a date in the future. There will however be only one live appointment for each beneficiary. During the booking, the app will also register the beneficiary for a second dose at the same CVC. However, they will be asked to book slots for their second dose. Cancellation of the first appointment would mean cancellation of appointment for both doses.
Eligible beneficiaries can register at the CO-WIN 2.0 portal through their mobile number following a step by step process. A person can register as many as four beneficiaries with a single mobile number.
(With inputs from agencies)