Ahead of nationwide dry run, first batch of COVID-19 vaccine to reach Delhi tonight

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KEY STORY

  • New Delhi: The first batch of coronavirus vaccine is slated to reach New Delhi from Pune by Thursday night. The vaccine is slated to be delivered ahead of the second dry run on January 8 and the proposed kickstart of the vaccination program by January 13.
  • Earlier today, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan sought personal attention of state health ministers and additional chief secretaries to oversee the second dry run on January 8.
  • The drill will take place across 736 districts in 33 states and union territories. The Health Minister interacted with state health ministers and principal secretaries of states via video conferencing.
    “The objective of the mock drill on COVID-19 vaccination is to simulate the actual vaccine administration event… This activity will help administrators in strengthening the linkages between planning, implementation and reporting mechanisms, identification of any residual challenges prior to the actual implementation and to provide confidence to the programme managers at all levels to carry out a smooth implementation of the vaccination drive,” the ministry said.

    Ensure the flow of ‘right information’: Health Minister tells states

  • The Health Minister also rubbished rumours regarding side-effects of the vaccine and urged the state departments to ensure delivery of the right information.
  • Earlier this week, the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) accorded approval to two COVID-19 vaccines COVAXIN by Bharat Biotech and Covisheild by Serum Institute of India. Certain political parties, as well as a section of researchers, criticised the move to give a green signal to COVAXIN without phase-3 trials.
  • The government, as well as Bharat Biotech, have rubbished the claims and said that the vaccine is 100 per cent safe.
  • Meanwhile, Harsh Vardhan will visit Tamil Nadu to oversee the dry run on January 8. He will visit Apollo Hospital, Chennai after a brief visit to the General Medical Store Depot (GMSD) in Periamedu.

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