Vaccine shortage: COVID-19 vaccination halted in Mumbai's BKC centre

Mumbai: The Covid-19 vaccination drive at BKC jumbo centre was temporarily halted on Tuesday due to unavailability of stock. In the last two days, 66 COVID vaccine centres could not conduct the drive due to which the beneficiaries’ turnout has dropped by 60 per cent.

Dr Rajesh Dere, Dean of BKC jumbo Covid centre, said they had to stop the vaccination as the stock had dried up and they had to perforce turn away the beneficiaries. “We had to stop the drive until further order from the BMC. We are hoping of securing additional doses by evening following which we will restart the drive,” he said. "We realised only last night about the shortage of Covishield doses." Dr Dere added.

Boards reading 'vaccine out of stock' have come up outside the BKC centre. The Mumbai police have also made an announcement to that effect. According to civic data, until April 7, Mumbai had received 21.40 lakh vaccines, of which 21.15 lakh had been used, with only 25,000 doses left until Sunday. So far, more than 20 lakh beneficiaries have been administered their shots since the drive began on January 16.

Beneficiaries were miffed and said if the vaccine stock gets exhausted every week then how they will be protected from contracting coronavirus. In the last 10 days it is the second time the BKC jumbo centre has run out of stock.

“The BMC and the state government need to come up with some options to vaccinate citizens above 50 at their residence. Also, they should set up camps in the societies so that we don’t have to come all the way to the centre and return without getting a jab,” said Jitendra Sharma, a resident of Mahim.

Additional Municipal Commissioner Suresh Kakani said that the city had stocks that would only last for a day or two. “We were down to 1.5 lakh doses, most of which have been distributed. If we don’t get stocks in a day or two, it will be a testing time for us,” he said. In Mumbai, there are 71 private hospitals and 49 BMC and government vaccine centres, where around 40,000 to 50,000 people can be inoculated daily.

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Free Press Journal