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79% coverage recorded on third day of vaccination drive

At least 4,001 front-line healthcare workers in the district took the Covid-19 vaccine on Thursday, according to the district health department
By Archana Mishra, Gurugram
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 11:13 PM IST

At least 4,001 front-line healthcare workers in the district took the Covid-19 vaccine on Thursday, according to the district health department. Nearly 79% turned up for a shot after walk-in vaccination of the registered beneficiaries was permitted by the government earlier this week.

In the last vaccination drive on Monday, only 60% of the targeted workforce received inoculation.

The health department expects to retain Thursday’s accelerated pace by covering healthcare workers from nursing homes and small clinics from Friday onwards. Only healthcare workers in government facilities and private hospitals have been covered so far in the three vaccination drives held in the city.

On Thursday, against the target of inoculating 4,661 people with Covishield, almost 3,786 (81%) took the jab at 49 vaccination sites. The takers for Covaxin, on the other hand, remained low, with 215 people getting inoculated out of 400 (54%) as hesitancy to fill the consent form continued to persist among health workers. The vaccination took place in at least 53 sites, which included 14 government sites and 17 big private hospitals, where multiple booths were set up.

Till now, a total of 7,490 health staff have received the Covid-19 vaccine in Gurugram— the highest in the state. In Haryana, at least 45, 893 people have received the first dose and are awaiting the second one to be administered 28 days later.

“We are still not satisfied with the vaccination numbers. More motivation is required to get rid of apprehensions regarding the vaccine. As Friday is the day for the routine immunisation, it is likely the vaccination numbers may fall. Inoculation will take place only in private hospitals,” said Dr Virender Yadav, chief medical officer.

Among various private hospitals, Columbia Asia Hospital vaccinated at least 120 health staff members, completing their Thursday’s target. Dr Nikhil Mishra, chief medical superintendent, Columbia Asia Hospital, said, “On Wednesday, the health department provided the hospital with the entire list of the staff registered on Co-WIN platform. We posted the information on the hospital’s social media group, apprising the staff about the walk-in. This expedited the process in comparison to Monday’s drive.”

Max Hospital also managed to achieve 95% of its target to vaccinate 330 health care staff. Arpita Mukherjee, vice president, operations, Max Hospital, said, “The new approach of walk-in has been helpful in conducting the vaccination drive. Three counters were set up for the vaccination, where doctors and staff directly came and got vaccinated within five minutes. Their phone numbers and ID proof were identified on Co-WIN platform.”

Mukherjee added that jab taken by many senior doctors of the hospital instilled confidence among the other health staff. “Considering the response received, we expect to cover our 2,400 health care workers by January 25,” said Mukherjee.

According to Mishra, vaccination being a voluntary exercise cannot be imposed on employees having apprehensions about taking the shot. The total staff of the Columbia Asia Hospital is 454, out of over 175 have been inoculated. “The drive will continue every day for the next few days in the hospitals. We not only have to cover our own staff but also an additional lot of 400 health workers from nursing homes and diagnostic centres within the vicinity,” said Mishra.

Dr MP Singh, district immunisation officer, said, “From Friday onwards, the health staff from small nursing homes and clinics will be inoculated. They have been alloted vaccination sites in at least 12 private hospitals. Messages have been delivered to them through Indian Medical Association and to the medical officers.”

Meanwhile, in the government facilities, the process of inoculating staff from ESIC hospital and government dispensaries has already started. In community centre in Sector 10, pharmacists, ambulance drivers, doctors and their assisting staff from Islampur, Civil Lines received inoculation.

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