Monday, March 1

3 sites in Bihar identified for Covid-19 vaccination dry run

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Patna, Jamui and Bettiah in West Champaran are among three districts of Bihar shortlisted for the pan-India dry run of Covid-19 vaccination to be undertaken on Saturday.

Three facilities have been identified in each of these districts for the exercise. The urban primary health centre at Shastrinagar, community health centre at Phulwarisharif and sub-divisional hospital at Danapur are among the three health facilities identified for the mock drill in Patna. Three schools have been identified as session sites, which are locations where vaccination will be administered, in Jamui, said Manoj Kumar, executive director of the State Health Society, Bihar, driving the vaccination programme.

“The mock drill will essentially test the technology put in place for the vaccination programme. All vaccinations have to be done through the Co-WIN portal, as per the Centre’s operational guidelines. The portal contains the database of the vaccinator as well as the beneficiary,” said Kumar.

Text messages will be sent out on mobile phones of the beneficiaries, which would guide them about the vaccination process and also remind them of the second shot after the first has been administered to them.

“We have identified 25 test beneficiaries, who will be healthcare workers, at each of the health facilities for the mock drill tomorrow. The data of these beneficiaries will be uploaded in Co-WIN. We will follow all social distancing norms and the standard operating procedure put in place by the government of India,” added Kumar.

As many as 35,000 healthcare workers have enrolled so far for the Covid vaccination in Patna, said district health officer.

“It is difficult to get an exact count on the number of private healthcare workers. We have, however, enrolled all those in public sector health facilities,” the officer said.

“There will be one vaccinator per 100 beneficiaries, as per the norms prescribed by the Centre,” said the official.

Private sector health facilities having more than 100 beneficiaries may get a vaccinator from the same facility, as the government has already prepared a database on them.

A session site would comprise three rooms — a waiting hall, vaccination room and an observation hall. Each team at a session site would have five members, including one vaccinator and four vaccinator officers, who would be from the police, information technology and health sectors.

The first vaccinator officer, ideally from the police set-up, has been tasked with the responsibility to maintain Covid-19 safety protocol, including social distancing. The second vaccinator officer will check the genuineness of the beneficiary through the Covin portal, while the third and fourth, drawn primarily from the health set-up, will be at the observation room to check for any side-effect post-vaccination and for information, and counselling activity.

The objective of the dry run is to assess operational feasibility in the use of the Co-WIN application in a field environment, to test the linkages between planning and implementation and to identify the challenges and guide the way forward to actual implementation.

The first round of the dry run was conducted in Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Gujarat and Punjab on December 28 and 29 in two districts each where five session sites with 25 test beneficiaries each were identified.