Bengaluru, Jan 15 (IANS) All arrangements have been made to begin vaccinating 16-lakh Covid warriors at 243 centres across Karnataka from Saturday, said state Health Minister K. Sudhakar on Friday.
“Covishield vaccine will be administered at 237 centres and Covaxin at 6 centres across the state after Prime Minister Narendra Modi virtually unveils the drive in Bengaluru on Saturday from New Delhi through video-conferencing,” Sudhakar told reporters here.
Arrangements for the drive include 10 walk-in coolers, 4 walk-in freezers, 3,210 ice lined refrigerators (ILRs), 46,591 vaccine carriers and 2,25,749 ice packs.
The state has received Covishield from the Pune-based Serum Institute of India and Covaxin from the Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech to first inoculate the frontline warriors, including healthcare workers, civic and police personnel.
“Modi will inaugurate the vaccination drive at the state-run Bengaluru Medical College and 9 other centres across this tech city, including private hospitals like St. Johns Medical College,” said Sudhakar on the occasion.
Covishield will be used in 24 of the 30 districts across the state and Covaxin in 6 districts – Ballari, Chamarajanagar, Chikkamagalur, Davangere, Hassan and Shivamogga in the state’s northern, central and southern regions.
“We have 8,14,500 doses of vaccines for the jab in the first phase. The second dose will be given 28 days after the first shot. Senior citizens above 50 years and persons with comorbidities will be given the vaccine in the second phase, said Sudhakar, who is a medical doctor by profession.
The minister reviewed preparations in all 30 districts across the state with their deputy commissioners, zilla parishad chief executives and health officials through video-conferencing from the state secretariat in the city centre.
Of the 7,17,439 healthcare warriors across the state, 24,300 will be vaccinated on the first day and the rest will be given the first shot over the coming days. They have all registered on the Co-Win online platform for the vaccine shot.
“Arrangements have been made for emergency medical service at all centres in case of side effects to any of the warriors. They will be under observation for 30 minutes after the jab to ensure they are safe to go home without side-effects,” asserted Sudhakar.
Allaying fears about the safety of both vaccines, the minister said beneficiaries or people should not believe in rumours circulating in the social media about their efficacy.
“Follow the information given on our government portals or handles as they are genuine and authenticated by experts. Both vaccines are safe for use,” Sudhakar reiterated.
The digital platform, developed by the Union Ministry of Health, will facilitate real-time information of vaccine stocks, storage temperature and tracking of each beneficiary across the country.
The ministry has also set up a dedicated 24×7 call centre – 1075 to answer any query on the Covid pandemic, vaccine rollout and the Co-Win app software.
The ministry has also sent a factsheet to all states on both vaccines with details on the rollout, physical specification, dosage, cold chain storage requirements, contra-indications and minor adverse event following immunisation (AEFIs).
Vaccine will not be administered to pregnant women and lactating mothers. Each dose will be 5ml at a time and repeated after 28 days initially and 14 days later.