India to start COVID-19 vaccination drive from January 16, healthcare, frontline workers to get priority
The COVID-19 vaccination drive in the country will start from January 16.
New Delhi: The COVID-19 vaccination drive in the country will start from January 16.
The decision was taken at a meeting on Saturday in which Prime Minister Narendra Modi reviewed the status of COVID-19 in the country and preparedness of states and union territories for vaccination against the disease.
A PMO release said that priority will be given to the healthcare workers and the frontline workers estimated to be around three crores followed by those above 50 years of age and the under-50 population groups with co-morbidities which number around 27 crores.
"After the detailed review, it was decided that in view of the forthcoming festivals including Lohri, Makar Sankranti, Pongal, Magh Bihu etc., the COVID-19 vaccination will start from January 16, 2021," a PMO release said.The Prime Minister took a detailed and comprehensive review of the status of COVID management covering various issues.
Emergency Use Authorisation or Accelerated Approval has been granted by the National Regulator for two vaccines - Covishield and Covaxin - which have established safety and immunogenicity, the release said.
The Prime Minister was briefed about the preparedness status of the Centre in close collaboration with the state and UT governments for the rollout of the vaccine.
The release said vaccination exercise is underpinned by the principles of people's participation (jan bhagidari), utilizing experience of elections (booth strategy) and Universal Immunization Program (UIP).
It will also not compromise of existing healthcare services, especially national programmes and primary health care and will be underpinned by "no compromise on scientific and regulatory norms and other SOPs and orderly and smooth implementation driven by technology.
The Prime Minister was also apprised about the Co-WIN Vaccine Delivery Management System.
The unique digital platform will provide real-time information of vaccine stocks, their storage temperature and individualized tracking of beneficiaries of the COVID-19 vaccine.
This platform will assist the programme managers across all levels through automated session allocation for pre-registered beneficiaries, their verification and for generating a digital certificate upon successful completion of the vaccine schedule. More than 79 lakh beneficiaries have been already registered on the platform.
The release said as the vaccinators and vaccine administrators comprise a crucial pillar of the vaccination exercise, their training process was detailed out.
It said 2,360 participants were trained during national-level training of trainers which included state immunization officers, cold chain officers, IEC officials and development partners. More than 61,000 programme managers, 2 lakh vaccinators and 3.7 lakh other vaccination team members have been trained so far as part of training at states, districts and block levels.The Prime Minister was also apprised on the three phases of dry runs having been conducted across the country. The third dry run was conducted yesterday across 615 districts covering 4895 session sites in 33 states and UTs.
The meeting chaired by Prime Minister was attended by Cabinet Secretary, Principal Secretary to PM, Health Secretary, and other senior officials. (ANI)