Maharashtra likely to get 3rd batch of Covid vaccine on Monday
Maharashtra is likely to get a third consignment of 1.03 million doses of the Covishield vaccine (manufactured by Serum Institute of India) on Monday, meant for the remaining part of the first and second phases of the nationwide mass inoculation programme against Covid-19.
The state government had earlier received around 1.8 million doses in two instalments for the drive that started from January 16. Now, according to the state health department, more than a million healthcare workers (HCWs) and 550,000 frontline workers (FLWs) have registered on the centralised app—CoWIN for vaccination. The state government will therefore require around 3 million doses as the inoculation comprises two shots given 28 days apart.
“It is expected that SII will start their nation-wide disbursement of 11 million doses of Covishield on Monday. So, we will most likely receive the third consignment of 1.03 million doses on Monday,” said a senior officer from the state health department.
Until Wednesday, the state had vaccinated 503,002 HCWs and 372,223 FLWs. However, the overall turnout of the state is 45%, which is below the national turnout rate of 55%.
The state government is planning to start the second shot of Covishield from February 14 for beneficiaries who took the first shot on January 16.
According to experts, the first dose of the vaccine helps to recognise the virus and ramp up the immune system that helps the body to fight the disease. The second dose is called the booster shot, which helps in further boosting up the immune system in the system. Hence, the administration of both is necessary.
“When the vaccine enters our body, it produces protein, which triggers the immune cells to produce antibodies. This protects us from the infection,” said Dr Om Srivastava, a city-epidemiologist who insisted people on taking both the shots.