EnglishHEALTHCAREImportant StoriesNATIONAL

PM Reviews Corona Vaccine Distribution Preparedness, Issue Instructions for Time-Bound Roll Out of Vaccination Drive

NEW DELHI, Nov 21: Even as India crossed a landmark milestone registering more than 13 crore tests and the active caseload falling to 4.86% of the total cases, the prime minister Narendra Modi reviewed the preparedness of Covid-19 vaccine delivery, distribution and administration on Saturday.

Prime Minister appreciated the efforts of innovators, scientists, academicians and pharma-companies in their efforts to develop vaccines and has directed that every effort should be made to facilitate the research, development and manufacturing of the vaccine.

Five vaccines are in advanced stages of development in India, out of which 4 are in Phase II/III and one is in Phase-I/II.  Countries such as Bangladesh, Myanmar, Qatar, Bhutan, Switzerland, Bahrain, Austria and South Korea – have shown keen interest in partnering for vaccine development of Indian vaccines and use thereof.

In an effort to administer the vaccine at the first available opportunity, database of healthcare and frontline workers, augmentation of cold chains and procurement of syringes, needles, etc. are in advanced stages of preparation.

The vaccination supply chain is being enhanced and non-vaccine supplies are being escalated.  Medical and nursing students and faculty will be involved in training and implementation of the vaccination programme.  Every step is being steadily put in place to ensure that vaccines reach every location and person according to the prioritisation principles, an official spokesman of the union health ministry said.

The Prime Minister has directed to work in collaboration with all reputed national and international institutions and regulators to ensure the rigour and highest global standards in Indian research and manufacturing.

National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for Covid-19 (NEGVAC) in consultation with State Governments and all relevant stakeholders have accelerated the implementation of vaccination of priority groups in first phase.

The digital platform for vaccine administration and distribution is prepared and test runs underway in partnership with the State and District Level stakeholders.

The Prime Minister reviewed the aspects of emergency use authorisation and for manufacture and procurement of medicine. As the results of these Phase III trials from national and international vaccine arrive, India’s robust and independent regulators will speedily and rigorously examine these for according authorisation for use, the spokesman said. Modi also instructed that a time-bound plan be laid out for speedy regulatory clearances and timely procurement for early rollout of the vaccination drive.

Meanwhile, keeping in line with the government’s commitment to conduct more than one million tests every day, 10,66,022 samples were tested in the last 24 hours which has increased India’s total cumulative tests to 13,06,57,808.

The last one crore tests were conducted in a span of just 10 days.

In the last 24 hours, 46,232 persons were found to be infected with COVID.  The Daily Positivity Rate of 4.34% point out that a comparatively huge volume was tested to detect these cases from the population. With a continuous surge in daily cases in European and the American countries, India is taking all cautionary steps to bring the trajectory of the disease under control. In view of the increase in COVID cases of some of the north Indian States, the Centre has advised all states and UTs to ramp up testing.

India’s present active caseload of 4,39,747comprises 4.86% of India’s Total Positive Cases, and has been sustained below the 5% mark.

India has registered 49,715 new recoveries in the last 24 hours taking the total recovered cases to 84,78,124.  The Recovery Rate has improved to 93.67% on Saturday. The gap between Recovered cases and Active cases is steadily increasing and presently stands at 80,38,377, the spokesman said.

(Manas Dasgupta)