Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan on Thursday said that the COVID-19 vaccines ‘Covishield’ and ‘Covaxin’ are on the verge of being available in the country.
The Health Minister, while addressing a press conference, said, “COVID-19 vaccines ‘Covishield’ and ‘Covaxin’ are on the verge of being available in the country. Our efforts are to ensure seamless last mile delivery of the vaccine.”
The minister further stated that some priority groups have been decided for vaccination as advised by the experts’ group formed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The expert group was formed for vaccine administration, vaccine delivery, strategies related to the vaccine, or taking any decisions for vaccine or for taking feedbacks from various places.
“In the first phase, the health care workers either of the public sector or private sector, frontline workers like central police, armed forces, home guards civil defence organisations, municipal workers will be administered the vaccine. In the second phase, people over 50 years will be prioritised for the vaccine,” he said.
The Health Minister said at the meeting with Health Ministers of all States and UTs that we have to ensure that no misinformation campaign on the COVID-19 vaccine is successful.
Maharashtra, Kerala and Chhattisgarh have seen a sudden spike in coronavirus cases recently. This gives us a warning that we shouldn’t forget precautions and continue our fight against COVID-19.
Giving the feedback on dry run of COVID-19 vaccine, he said, “Feedback on a dry run of COVID-19 vaccine in 4 states was reviewed. We have made improvements based on the feedback. Tomorrow dry run will be done in 33 States and Union Territories.”
Meanwhile, government sources said that the transportation of the COVID-19 vaccine will begin by today or tomorrow.
Pune will be the central hub from where the distribution of vaccine will take place. Passengers aircraft will be allowed to transport vaccine in the belly of the carrier. There are total 41 destinations (airports) across the country finalised for delivery of vaccines.
For northern India, Delhi and Karnal will be made mini-hubs. For the eastern region, Kolkata and Guwahati will be the mini-hub for distribution. Guwahati will also be a nodal point for the Northeast. Chennai and Hyderabad will be the designated points for southern India.