Mumbai: To ensure that every recipient gets two doses of the same vaccine, the state health department on Thursday selected six hospitals across Maharashtra that will exclusively administer Bharat Biotech's Covaxin.
Health officials said they have received 20,000 units of the vaccine, of which 2,000 units have been distributed to each of the six centres.
This decision comes on the eve of the world's largest mass vaccination drive, starting January 16, across Maharashtra and the rest of India.
On January 3, the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) approved the emergency restricted usage of two Covid-19 vaccines—-Oxford University’s Covishield vaccine and Bharat Biotech's Covaxin— the first indigenous vaccine against novel coronavirus.
According to the rules of the Indian Medical Council of Research, the recipient registered for the Covid vaccination drive must take the same vaccine both times and cannot switch products. Therefore, Covaxin will also be given to healthcare workers from January 16 at the selected centres, to avoid a mix-up with Covishield.
“We have selected six hospitals for Covaxin so that beneficiaries do not switch to other vaccines after taking any one dose first. Apart from Sir Jamshedji Jeejeebhoy Hospital, Mumbai, the five other vaccination sites across the state include the government medical colleges of Solapur, Aurangabad and Nagpur; the district hospitals in Pune and Amravati,” said Dr Dilip Patil, state immunisation officer. Each of these centres have received 2,000 units of Covaxin.