Health secretary Rajesh Bhushan and R S Sharma, chief executive of the National Health Authority who oversees the Co-Win system, reviewed preparedness with states and UTs and said there was no shortage of vaccines and urged that private hospitals should be promptly supplied stocks to encourage vaccination.
The Centre assured states that it would continually replenish the stocks based on consumption trends. “There is no value in conserving vaccines for the second dose and states must promptly supply vaccines to all government and private hospitals where there is demand,” Sharma told states. After a weekend and Holi, close to 20 lakh shots were delivered on March 30.
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The Centre said efforts should be made to keep vaccine wastage under 1% and regularly review use of the shots. At present, the average wastage is pegged at 6%.
States have also been asked to ensure there is no pile-up of vaccine stocks at any level of storage, distribution is based on consumption to avoid over- or under-stocking at cold chain points and Covid vaccination centres (CVCs) and to carry out regular review of vaccine stocks to identify gap areas and address these expeditiously.
The Centre stressed the need to involve more private hospitals. On Wednesday, only 6,457 vaccination sessions were in private facilities, while 42,502 were in government hospitals.
Till 7pm on Wednesday, 6.4 crore vaccine doses were given in the country. Of this, over 3 crore were first doses to people above 60, whereas 76.7 lakh people between 45 and 60 with co-morbidities received the vaccine. Around 92.6 lakh people were fully vaccinated with two doses till 7 pm on Wednesday.
The government is expecting an upswing in numbers from April 1 when all those above 45, irrespective of co-morbidities, will be eligible for vaccination against Covid-19. While registration for vaccination will be available both online and onsite, those opting for onsite registration will have to go after 3pm.