Coronavirus vaccination in India: The Centre on Monday launched the dry run for vaccination drive in anticipation of the coronavirus immunisation drive that it would likely undertake starting next month. One of the four states chosen for the dry run was Andhra Pradesh, where the dry run is being conducted in five facilities of the Krishna district. At these places, the beneficiaries were selected from among the healthcare workers at each site, and the dry run began at 9 in the morning on Monday. As many as 95% of the beneficiaries attended the process and the drive ended by 1 pm, and the work on preparation of the session site, allotting time and vaccinators to beneficiaries and sending them messages went well.
The centres in Andhra Pradesh also witnessed smooth allocation of the vaccine doses from the stores.
The coronavirus vaccination drive would be the largest vaccination campaign undertaken in the country and therefore, the government is attempting to smooth over any hitches in the dry run itself. It is being carried out in four states in four corners of the country – Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Assam and Punjab. According to a report in IE, Punjab’s Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar and Ludhiana are conducting the run. On the other hand, Nalbari and Sonitpur in Assam and Gujarat’s Gandhinagar and Rajkot districts are also holding the drive.
During the test run, CoWIN is being tested by the teams. As per the report, CoWIN is an application that has been designed to make identification of vaccine beneficiaries based on priority easier, while also helping in the vaccination drive’s planning, implementation as well as its reporting mechanism.
The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare informed the states that the beneficiaries for the vaccines would be identified before the drive and they would also receive SMS in advance which would inform them about the vaccinator administering the dosage to them as well as their time slot.
In accordance with this, some beneficiaries from the four states who had registered on the app received these details via SMS on Monday during the first day of the vaccination mock drill.
As per a statement by the ministry, the dry run would test, along with the CoWIN platform, the following steps in the vaccination process:
- Creating facilities and users on Co-WIN application
- Creation of session site and mapping the sites
- Uploading of Health Care Workers (HCW) data
- Receiving and allocating vaccines by the district
- Session planning
- Vaccination team deployment
- Mobilisation of logistics at the session site
- Conducting mock drills for vaccination and reporting
- Review meetings at the levels of blocks, districts and states
One government hospital in Vijayawada, three PHCs and a health institute in Andhra Pradesh are conducting the dry run, with 25 workers appointed at each site for the drill. The report said that Monday saw the dry run going well in the state. The second phase would be conducted on Tuesday. Meanwhile, five hospitals in each of the two districts in Assam are conducting the dry run there.
As far as Punjab is concerned, the report quoted COVID-19 nodal officer Dr Rajesh Bhaskar as saying that they have as many as 4,000 teams which can vaccinate around 100 people each in a day, translating to about 4 lakh people being vaccinated daily once the vaccine supply begins. Seven hospitals across Ludhiana are a part of the mock drill with 25 healthcare workers each. This means that in Ludhiana alone, 175 healthcare workers are a part of the dry run. Apart from that, 125 health workers are a part of the drill in Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar.
In Gujarat’s Gandhinagar, four places had been identified for the dry run and these included private as well as public healthcare facilities. Meanwhile, the preparations for the drill were completed in Rajkot on Tuesday, where the authorities have identified five booths with a vaccinator and four officers for vaccination. These booths also include private as well as public facilities. Rajkot’s Chief District Health Officer Mitesh Bhanderi was quoted by the report as saying that all of the booths have been connected to a vaccine cold chain point. From these points, vaccines would be dispatched for the booths.