The Rajasthan government has floated a global tender for procuring one crore vaccines from the international market. The state has undertaken a massive vaccination programme for the 18 to 44 year age group and would need 3.25 crore doses of the vaccine to cater to this age group.
The Rs 2300 crore vaccination programme for this age group is now the highest priority for the state government. So far, the state has only vaccinated 6.20 lakh people. Rajasthan has also placed an order with the Serum Institute which has said it will only be able to send just a fraction of the placed order by the third week of May.
The bidders have been asked to submit their bids by May 20 which would be examined by a high-level committee that would submit its report to the government.
The Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) has approved three vaccines so far of which two vaccines are being produced in India and the third Sputnik is imported from Russia. According to the State Director of National Health Mission (NSM), Sudhir Sharma one of the conditions the bidder will have to follow is an early delivery of the vaccines as the state is facing a surge in cases.
The NSM is the nodal body for the purchase of vaccines, oxygen, and ventilators. The bidding supplier company will have to guarantee the delivery of vaccines within the given deadline. Only companies that are on the approved list of the Centre will be allowed to bid.
The state government had placed an order of 3.75 crores doses with the Serum Institute and the supply is only likely to commence from the third week of May. Two companies, Biological E and Zydus Cadila are also preparing to launch their vaccines in the country.
Not just vaccines, state looking at oxygen too
The state government has finalized a plan to set up 105 oxygen plants in 59 small and big towns of the state which are likely to be ready in two months. The state is confident that once the plants are up and running it will be able to supply oxygen to 5786 hospital beds.
Plans are also afoot to procure a regular supply of 10,125 oxygen cylinders. In the next two months, the state would be able to get 97 metric tons of oxygen.
In the first phase, 48 local bodies would be equipped with oxygen plants.
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