Ahead of the roll-out of Covid-19 vaccines from January 16, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will interact with chief ministers of all states on January 11, which will be the first interaction between PM Modi and the CMs after the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) gave restricted, emergency-use approval to two vaccines — Oxford Astrazeneca’s vaccine known as Covishield in India, locally manufactured by Pune’s Serum Institute and Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin. Three rounds of the dry run have so far been conducted across the country and there is a week’s time to improve on weak areas identified during these mock drills.
What distinguishes India’s vaccination drive from other countries that have already started are the number of people Indian aims to inoculate at free of cost on the first stage and the nature of the vaccines. After once crore health care workers and two crore front line workers, the Centre plans to vaccinate 27 crore people who are at a greater risk of contracting the disease.
Here is all you need to know
> Prime Minister Narendra Modi has reiterated that India has a global role in vaccination against Covid-19. “Being the pharmacy of the world, India has supplied important medicines to all those in need in the world in the past and is also doing so now. The world is not only waiting for Indian vaccines but is also watching how India runs the world’s biggest vaccination programme,” he said as he was speaking at Pravasi Bharatiya Divas on Saturday,
> The date of December 16 has been chosen because of the festivals including Lohri, Makar Sankranti, Pongal, Magh Bihu etc.
> India has also come up with an application for vaccination registration Co-WIN. During the dry run, states were asked to use the pre-product link of the application, which is not yet launched for public use (https://preprod.co-vin.in/home). Vaccine officials registered the name of health care workers who will be vaccinated at the beginning. The application is not yet available for downloading as the frontline workers do not need to register themselves for getting Covid-19 vaccine. Self-registration is only for people who are at a higher risk of contracting the disease.
> The health ministry has also made it clear that though Co-WIN is an Indian app, the government will proactively consider if any other country wants to use the app for their vaccination drive.
> To track people above 50 years, the latest electoral roll for Lok Sabha and Legislative Assembly elections will be used.
> Beneficiaries will receive SMS informing them about the date and time of the vaccination. After one dose, they will be notified the date of the second dose. Only after both the doses, they will get their digital certificate.
> Before the vaccination drive starts, PM will take stock of the Covid-19 situation of the states.
> States have urging the Centre to make vaccine free for all people. The Centre has already said that vaccination of frontline workers will be free.
> The PM-CARES ((Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations)Fund may be used for the purchase of the vaccines. The government had earlier allocated ₹100 crore from the fund for the development of vaccines.
> In-depth training for vaccination has already been held in all states. Doctors, staff nurses, pharmacists who are legally authorised to give injections will vaccinate people.
> There will be vaccine officers 1 who will check the registration status of the beneficiaries. Vaccine officers 2 will verify documents. Vaccine officers 3 and 4 will manage the crowd.
> All vaccine booths will arrange for three large rooms: waiting room, vaccinating room, observation room.