Before the actual rollout of the vaccine anytime soon, the Centre has directed all states and Union Territories to carry out a dry run for COVID-19 vaccination on January 2.
The dry run will be conducted to test the planning and implementation of the vaccination process by the authorities. The test run will be conducted in all state capitals in at least three proposed vaccination centres.
Three vaccine manufacturers have so far applied for emergency use authorisation. These include Pfizer, Bharat Biotech and Serum Institute of India. An expert committee of the government regulator will take a call on providing the nod to the applicants on January 1.
Dry runs in difficult terrains
Some states will also include districts that are situated in difficult terrain/have poor logistical support, while Maharashtra and Kerala are likely to schedule the dry run in major cities other than their capital, the Union health ministry said.
“The objective of the dry run for COVID-19 vaccine introduction is to assess operational feasibility in the use of Co-WIN application in field environment, to test the linkages between planning and implementation and to identify the challenges and guide the way forward prior to actual implementation. This is also expected to give confidence to programme managers at various levels,” the ministry said.
Review by Union health secretary
The Union government has also asked all states and UTs to ensure effective preparedness for the COVID-19 vaccine roll-out. Union health secretary Rajesh Bhushan on Thursday chaired a high-level meeting to review the preparedness at session sites for COVID-19 vaccination with principal secretaries (health) and other health administrators of all states and UTs through video-conferencing.
Over 1.02 crore cases
The health ministry on Thursday informed that 21,822 fresh cases of COVID-19 have been reported in India in the past 24 hours. The addition of the fresh cases has taken the COVID-19 case tally past 1.02 crore. Also, 299 COVID-19 related deaths were reported by the ministry during this period. The addition of the fresh fatalities has taken India’s death toll due to the deadly virus to 1,48,738.
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