Coronavirus: As India nears vaccine authorisation, dry run for immunisation drive set to begin in 4 states

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coronavirus vaccination drive in IndiaA national-level training of 2,360 participants has been conducted.Coronavirus vaccination drive in India: Preparations for coronavirus vaccination drive dry run are underway in full swing at Ludhiana’s Dayanand Medical College, according to news agency ANI. With the coronavirus vaccine possibly around the corner in India, the Centre has planned a two-day dry run for the vaccination drive across four states – Punjab, Assam, Andhra Pradesh as well as Gujarat. The dry run is set to begin on Monday, ie, December 28 and conclude on December 29. The dummy exercise would be held in a total of eight districts, or in two districts of each of the four states.

Also read | Explainer: Where are we in the COVID-19 vaccine race?

The coronavirus vaccination drive would be the largest as well as the most ambitious immunisation programme the country has ever seen, which makes this dry run highly important to understand any possible obstacles that could interrupt the actual implementation of the drive.

A report in IE stated that the Centre would closely monitor the dry run being conducted in the four states in four corners of the country, and the drive would have four important steps. First of all, each of the districts would be provided with a dummy vaccine with doses meant for 100 beneficiaries, and these would be provided from the nearest depot. The vaccine doses’ temperature would be tracked during their journey from the depot to the site of the vaccination, which is a key step since all of the vaccines developed so far require cold storage or cryogenic storage and distribution facilities. Each of the beneficiaries would receive an SMS containing the time of the vaccination as well as the name of the vaccinator in advance. Moreover, every beneficiary would be made to sit for 30 minutes after the vaccine has been administered, and in case any adverse event takes place, the management of the event would be tracked through the central server.

The report further quoted a senior government official as saying that a national-level training of 2,360 participants has been conducted and these participants included cold chain as well as immunisation officers. Now that officers have been trained to undertake the vaccination drive, the dry run would highlight the effectiveness of the training, the official said.

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