Covaxin 2nd dose to start from tomorrow in Cachar; Only those who receive SMS to visit centre
Devastating confusion around Covaxin second dose is all across the country. The patent owners of the vaccine advise beneficiaries to take both doses within a gap of 28 to 42 days. There are many all over the country including the Cachar district who have already passed the 42-day deadline or are closing into it. In such a situation, there is a lot of anxiety among those who have already got the first jab and are eagerly waiting for the second one.
Cachar district administration has issued a press statement today announcing that the inoculation of the second dose will begin tomorrow. The statement reads, “District routine vaccination will take place for the 2nd dose of COVAXIN for 45+. Only those people who will get the message on their registered mobile number from Cachar Central Server will be allowed to have the 2nd dose of COVAXIN.”
The statement adds, “The criteria for selection of beneficiaries for 2nd dose of COVAXIN for 45+ will be on the basis maximum time lapsed from the date of vaccination of the first dose to ensure impartiality and equality.”
It is worth mentioning here that today evening Munindra Nath Ngatey, Director of Health Services (Family Welfare) issued a statement that contradicts Cachar Health Department. His statement read, “Request all citizens of age group 18-44 years, who have taken their Covaxin 1st dose before 7th May/21 to avail their 2nd dose in the same CVCs (Covid Vaccination Centres) on 12th or 13th or 14th June/21 or as decided by the districts. Walk-in registration.”
The state has received new consignments of Covaxin vials. If sources in the Cachar health department are to be believed, a vaccine carrier vehicle was sent to the office of Director Family Welfare to bring the doses to the district. Highly placed sources informed that the district does not have enough doses to meet the demand of walk-in vaccination and that is why a different strategy of vaccinating 45+ through prior invitation has been rolled out.
The administration also fears a law and order situation in the case of walk-in vaccination. It has happened before too where in extreme weather conditions, people waited in the queue for hours only to return without the jab. As there is a significant number of beneficiaries waiting for the second dose of Covaxin and have passed the 28-day mark, the administration decided to go with vaccination only on receipt of SMS on the registered mobile number. The administration is expecting more doses to reach soon and once received the strategy might change.
Director of NHM Assam, S Lakshmanan had explained in an interview with Barak Bulletin how the preference will be given to those who are nearing the 42-day or have already crossed it. Read it below.