39,690 health workers got Covid-19 vaccine shots in first 10 days in Mumbai
Record number of 6,351 health workers immunised on Saturday; BMC says jabs can go up to 50,000 a day
After 10 days of the Covid-19 vaccination drive in Mumbai, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has vaccinated 39,690 healthcare workers (HCW)s. On Saturday, a record number of HCWs — 6,351— were vaccinated in Mumbai and the turnout was 80% of the projected target of 7,923. BMC officials expect the turnout to remain high over the weekend since HCWs prefer to be vaccinated on weekends, making use of their weekly off days, which are usually either Saturday or Sunday.
According to its calculations, BMC has vaccinated an average of 3,969 HCWs daily. At present, there are 12 vaccination centres in the city. The highest number of beneficiaries have been vaccinated at Bhabha Hospital in Bandra, which has handled 6,210 beneficiaries. The second-highest numbers are at KEM Hospital in Parel, where 5,865 beneficiaries have been vaccinated. Sir JJ Hospital has seen the fewest beneficiaries followed by the NESCO Covid-19 Jumbo centre, which became operational as a vaccination centre two days ago. Sir JJ Hospital is the only centre administering Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin. Other centres in the city are administering Covishield, which has been developed by AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford.
Additional municipal commissioner Suresh Kakani said on Friday, “At the current pace, we can vaccinate daily between 15,000-25,000 beneficiaries. This can be augmented to 50,000 in the coming days. In the third phase, when general public will be vaccinated, our capacity might have to go up further.”
To that end, BMC plans to enrol private hospitals for the vaccination drive and is awaiting guidelines from the Centre and state government on this issue. Meanwhile, BMC has started the process of shortlisting private medical institutions in the city that would be interested in acquiring the permissions necessary for the vaccination process.
Civic commissioner Iqbal Singh Chahal had on January 16 said, “We can vaccinate even up to 1 lakh beneficiaries once private institutions are allowed to vaccinate citizens.”
In the first phase of the vaccination drive, BMC aims to vaccinate 130,000 HCWs . In the second phase, which is likely to begin by mid-February, frontline workers (including police and civic officials, clean-up workers and fire brigade officials) will be vaccinated.
BMC on Friday said after citizens who are above 50 and have comorbidities would be vaccinated in the third phase.