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Ghaziabad hospital sees long vaccine queue as staff ‘late’ by an hour

Ghaziabad: Long queues ensued at the Sanjay Nagar Combined District Hospital on Saturday for the Covid-19 vaccine
PUBLISHED ON MAR 06, 2021 11:17 PM IST

Ghaziabad: Long queues ensued at the Sanjay Nagar Combined District Hospital on Saturday for the Covid-19 vaccine. It was the only government facility in the district administering the shots on Saturday. Beneficiaries said the staff arrived around 10am even though vaccination was supposed to start at 9am.

Vaccination for senior citizens and those having co-morbidities (category 3) is on and the district, during the past three sessions on March 1, 4 and 5, saw 6,749 people take their first dose out of a target of 93,480 for the month.

“The staff generally comes around 8.30am. On Saturday, however, they arrived at 10am. There were serpentine queues of beneficiaries who were not maintaining social distance. I requested them to observe precautions,” said Vinod Malhotra, 72, who came with his wife for her vaccination.

“Many senior citizens are not used to the Co-WIN portal, so they are registering on the spot. On Friday, the staff provided tokens to beneficiaries for their turn but on Saturday, no token was given,” he added.

When contacted, Dr Sanjay Teotia, the chief medical superintendent of the hospital, said: “The staff who administers the vaccination is not from our hospital and has been provided by the chief medical officer (CMO).”

District CMO Dr NK Gupta said that the vaccination drive at the hospital has been running for six days while other government health facilities were directed to operate for three days – on Monday, Thursday and Friday.

“We will direct staff to ensure there is no delay, and that all Covid-related protocols are observed strictly. Generally, they come early but may have faced some delay on Saturday. I will ask them to ensure the vaccination begins timely. We have observed that attending to a beneficiary sometimes takes as long as 15-20 minutes. This is because about 50% of our 25 centres do not have computers and staff have to access the Co-Win portal on their mobile phones,” he added.

According to officials, vaccination is being taken up at 20 private hospitals and 25 government healthcare facilities in the district, including the one at Sanjay Nagar.

“During a conference with state health officials on Saturday, we were directed that walks-in should preferably be vaccinated at government facilities while private hospitals should preferably entertain only those who pre-register. They (private hospitals) should entertain walk-ins only if they have slots left,” CMO added.

According to officials, at least 19,269 healthcare workers took the jab out of about 25,000 (77.07% coverage) while 14,480 of the 19,269 took their second dose as well till March 5.

Of the 18,897 frontline workers, 10,592 (coverage of about 56.05%) took their first dose while 747 of 10,592 took their second dose till March 5 in the district.

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