Covid-19 vaccination weekly wrap: India reaches 20 million mark, 1.5 million inoculated in a single-day
- India is behind only the United States and the United Kingdom in terms of the total number of people receiving vaccination, data from the health ministry shows.
The vaccination drive against the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) is progressing steadily in the country and authorities are inoculating thousands of people every day. As of Saturday evening, a total of 20,662,073 vaccine doses have been administered in the country, the health ministry said in the statement.
In the first phase, which started on January 16, healthcare and frontline workers - the most vulnerable group in fight against Covid-19 - were given vaccines. So far, 69,72,859 healthcare and 65,02,869 frontline workers have received a jab against the infection. Out of these, 35,22,671 healthcare and 1,97,853 frontline workers have received the second dose as well, according to health ministry.
India reached the ten million-mark on February 19. It vaccinated the highest number of people on March 5 when nearly 1.5 million people were inoculated against Covid-19. Before this, the country administered about 1.4 million doses on Thursday.
India is behind only the United States and the United Kingdom in terms of the total number of people receiving vaccination, data from the health ministry shows. It is also one of the fastest countries to reach the 20 million milestone.
In the second phase of vaccination drive, which commenced from March 1, the government allowed people above 60 years of age to receive the jab. Those above 45 and with specified co-morbid conditions are also getting vaccinated in the second phase.
The government also gave a nod to private vaccination centres where people can get the jab at a set price.
Meanwhile, experts said there is a need to speed up the drive at least six to 10 times if the country plans to achieve its target of immunising 300 million people most at risk of exposure or death by August.
The Centre is planning to more than double the number of vaccination centres and reach deeper into rural parts of the country, targeting a massive expansion that experts believe is possible only if policies are relaxed and India’s vast immunisation infrastructure is tapped into.