India to begin COVID-19 vaccination drive from January 16 and frontline, healthcare workers to get priority.

India to begin COVID-19 vaccination drive from January 16, frontline, healthcare workers to get priority

     The COVID-19 vaccination drive in India will commence on January 16, 2021. The decision of starting the largest vaccination drive was taken in a meeting on January 9 during which PM Modi also reviewed the status of COVID-19 in India.

On 16th January, India takes a landmark step forward in fighting COVID-19. Starting that day, India’s nation-wide vaccination drive begins. Priority will be given to our brave doctors, healthcare workers, frontline workers including Safai Karamcharis. 

Prime Minister also reviewed the preparedness of UTs and states for vaccination against the deadly disease. After the detailed review during the meeting, the decision was taken that in the view of upcoming festivals including Makar Sankranti, Lohri, Magh Bihu, Pongal, etc., the vaccination drive will start from January 16.

As per the release by PMO, priority will be given to the frontline, healthcare workers who are estimated to be around three crores. They will be followed by those who are above 50 years and under 50 population groups with any form of co-morbidities. Their number is around 27 crores.

During the meeting, PM Modi was briefed about the centre’s preparedness status of the drive-in collaboration with UTs and states for the rollout of the vaccine. He was also apprised of the government’s CO-WIN Vaccine delivery management system.

While reviewing the vaccination drive status, PM Modi was informed of the three phases of dry run by the government having been conducted all over the country.

• As per the release, the vaccination drive has been underpinned by the principles of participation by people (jan bhagidari), the Universal Immunization Program, and utilizing the experience of elections.

• The drive will not compromise the existing healthcare services, especially primary healthcare and national programmes. It will be underpinned by no compromise on regulatory and scientific norms and smooth and orderly implementation driven by technology.

• A crucial pillar of the vaccination drive will be comprised of the vaccine administrators and vaccinations. During the meeting, their training process was also detailed out.

• Around 2,360 participants were trained during the national-level training of trainers. It included cold chain officers, immunization officers, development partners, and IEC officials.

• For the drive, more than 2 lakh vaccinators, 61,000 programme managers, and 3.7 lakh team members have been trained. They are trained as part of training at district, state, and block levels.

• The unique digital platform will be providing real-time information on vaccine stocks, the vaccine’s storage temperature, and the tracking of beneficiaries of the vaccine.

• The platform will also be assisting the program managers at all levels for pre-registered beneficiaries. There will also be assistance for their verification and for the generation of the digital certificates on the successful completion of the vaccine schedule.

• On the platform, more than 79 lakh beneficiaries have already registered.

The National regulator granted the emergency use authorization for two vaccines in India- COVAXIN, and Covishield. Both the vaccines have established immunogenicity and safety during the clinical trials.