Health Minister Rajesh Tope on Thursday announced that vaccination for children in the 15-18 years age group would be launched in schools with adequate care, after their reopening from January 24. The issue was discussed at the cabinet which gave its consent for the same at its meeting held today.
“From January 24, all schools in the state, from pre-primary to Class 12 will be reopened as it was approved by the state cabinet today (Thursday). It will be done in consultation with the district collectors, the district guardian ministers, chief executive officers and education officers,” said Tope.
“A presentation was made on the corona situation at the Cabinet meeting. The cabinet suggested that emphasis should be placed on vaccination for both eligible beneficiaries and children in the 15-18 years age bracket. Even today, some districts in the state are lagging in the administration of the first and second vaccine doses. It was decided that the divisional commissioners should pay special attention to increasing the pace of vaccination in these districts,” he said.
The cabinet’s approval for allowing schools to conduct vaccination on their premises came days after the paediatric taskforce headed by Dr Suhas Prabhu had made a suggestion in this regard. As reported by The Free Press Journal, the taskforce had, on December 28, 2021, at its meeting stressed the need for the commencement of vaccination of children from the 15-18 age group at the vaccination centres being used for adults. In case of reluctance or hesitancy from parents, the taskforce had suggested that vaccination could be carried out in schools and colleges.
“Fifty per cent of children from the age bracket of 15-18 years have been vaccinated in the state. The process will definitely gain momentum now. Schools should start vaccination in their premises with necessary care,” said Tope.
“There is no reason for parents to be confused about vaccinations. All over the world, children are being vaccinated. At present, only children between the ages of 15 and 18 years are being vaccinated,” he mentioned.