The LexGaze Weekly - HOPE

India almost ready for massive COVID-19 vaccination drive

Aishwary Jaiswal, Technical Editor, LexGaze

Issue 26 | January 10, 2021

Post conducting a massive nationwide drill on the administration of the COVID-19 vaccine on Saturday, India is positive about taking the challenge of vaccinating head-on. The mock trial was conducted at 286 work sites spread across 125 districts.

The drill was performed to foresee any shortcomings which might make their way in during the actual vaccination of the citizens, after the same of the frontline workers. The test comes at a well-needed time, as India is all set to roll out two of its four indigenous vaccines- Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin and Serum Institute’s Covishield. The other two in question are still in advance stages of development.

A statement released by the Central Government reads, “Each district conducted the dry run at three sites or more which included a public health facility (district hospital/medical college), private health facility, and rural or urban outreach sites.” The statement further stated, “This dry run was aimed at testing the laid-out mechanisms for COVID-19 vaccination rollout in the health system and to assess operational feasibility of using Co-WIN application in the field environment for planning, implementation, and reporting at the block, district, and state level.”

Co-WIN is an application launched by the Government of India for the successful registration and vaccination of the beneficiaries. The main idea behind conducting a trial run was to familiarise the state, district, block, and hospital-level officers with all the aspects of the rollout of the vaccine.

Apparently, the states and union territories conducted the drill seamlessly from 9 A.M. onwards. “The activities starting from beneficiary data upload, session site allocation and micro-planning, vaccine allocation, session site management with test beneficiaries, reporting mechanism, etc. were covered in this one-day dry run to execute the nearest possible simulation of the actual day”, said the Government.

It has also come to the attention that the preparation to handle all possible adverse events following the immunization at all the relevant session sites was also tested. The Government also boasts that all the UTs and states are satisfied with the planning for the actual run, as the dry run ended up being extremely successful.

Seemingly, the simulation ended with review meetings at various levels to discuss the challenges encountered during the drill and how to overcome them during the actual run.

Although 125 districts are virtually nothing in comparison with the whopping Indian geography, it is still a relief to see the Government at least preparing for the tiring yet much-awaited days to come!

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