Covid vaccine administration low in Mumbai, shows state health department data

Health officials have attributed this to the low caseload a month back due to which parents are hesitant to get their children vaccinated.

Swapnil MishraUpdated: Monday, July 18, 2022, 09:26 PM IST
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NOVAVAX Covid-19 vaccination | Photo: Twitter Image

Mumbai still is positioned at 36 in administering the first dose of Covid vaccine to children between 12-14 years and at 30 in vaccinating children between 15-17 years of age in the state.

According to government statistics, only 39.28 per cent of children between 12-14 years of age have been administered the first dose of the Covid vaccine, while 58.59 per cent between 15-17 years old have been vaccinated in Mumbai.

Health officials have attributed this to the low caseload a month back due to which parents are hesitant to get their children vaccinated. Meanwhile, BMC has decided to reach out to the eligible population during the Amrut Mahotsav Campaign and vaccinate as many people as they can.

“We still need an awareness related to Covid vaccination for parents or they should counsel and explain to them the benefits of the vaccine as it is the only way through which their children will be safe from contracting Covid infections. We urge parents to come forward and be a part of a 75-day free drive and get their children vaccinated considering Covid had impacted children during the third wave,” said a senior paediatrician.

According to the data provided by the state health department, until July 14, the state average of vaccinating children between 12-14 years with the first dose is 64.11 per cent, while only 35.88 per cent have been fully vaccinated across Maharashtra. Similarly, 65.91 per cent of children between 15-17 years have taken the first dose, while only 47.63 per cent are fully vaccinated.

Meanwhile, senior health experts from the civic health department have cited several reasons for the lowest vaccination in the age group of 15 to 17 years of age including misconceptions related to vaccines, and a drop in cases.

“We have been urging parents to come forward for children's vaccination but rumours circulating on social media has impacted the vaccination drive. Meanwhile, cases have reduced, so parents believe there is no need of vaccinating their children until it's necessary,” said a doctor from the civic health department.

Dr Sachin Patil, State Immunization Officer, said that all the districts are doing their best in vaccinating children but still there are a few who have vaccinated less number of children with the first dos, including Mumbai. They have asked all district health officers to create more awareness about children's vaccination drives which will help in increasing the number of beneficiaries. Moreover, we have also asked to visit door-to-door for the children's vaccination.

“We are pushing for vaccination for all age groups. 'Under Har Ghar Dastak,' Asha workers and community health officers urge people to take the second dose and the booster dose. The government has also started a 75-day free drive for booster doses, along with providing the first and second dose to those who have skipped. We are also sensitising parents and school managements on inoculating children in the age group of 12-18 as the schools have now reopened,” the health official said.

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