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J&K, Ladakh set to start Covid-19 vaccine drive on Saturday

Health workers to be vaccinated in 1st phase

Jahangir Sofi

Srinagar, Jan 15: Jammu Kashmir and Ladakh is all set to kick-start the Covid-19 vaccination drive on Saturday. 

Commissioner Health and Medical Education Atal Dulloo (IAS) while speaking to news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO), said they have received almost 1.46 lakh Covishield doses of covid-19 vaccine for Jammu and Kashmir out of which almost 75,000 vaccine doses have been allocated for Kashmir division.

“There are 40 vaccination sites in Jammu and in Kashmir out of which 20 are in Jammu and 20 are in Kashmir,” he said.

Dulloo said the first dose of Covid-19 vaccine will be given to the health workers who have already registered themselves for vaccination, while in the second phase frontline workers will be vaccinated.  

Pertinent to mention, over  1.22 lakh have been infected by the virus in Jammu & Kashmir so far, and close to 1915 people have died.

Authorities in Kashmir conducted many mock drills in different districts, in preparation for the vaccine rollout to understand the best way to administer the vaccine and plug loopholes in logistics and training.

State Immunisation Officer, Dr Qazi Haroon told KNO that all arrangements have been put in place and adequate vaccines have been forwarded to all districts to start vaccination on Saturday.

Qazi said that choppers were pressed into service to take vaccines to far off places.

Officials from Jammu division said that they received 67,500 vaccines on Wednesday and accordingly they forwarded the vaccine to all the district.

A top health official from Ladakh said that they received 11,500 doses of Covishield vaccine which were equally distributed between Leh and Kargil districts.

He added that vaccine will be administered at the primary health centre for which 17 sites in Leh and 23 in Kargil have been created.

Sources said that the government of India has directed Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh administrations to deliver some vaccines to central and Armed healthcare workers too.

Over one crore and 5.27 lakh people have been infected by the virus in India so far, and close to 1.52 lakh deaths reported, the Government of India said around 100 people will receive shots at each of the 3,006 vaccination sites across the country on Saturday.

The first phase of vaccination is likely to be completed in a few months. The vaccines being administered in the first phase will be free.

“The Centre will bear the expenses for vaccinating the 3 crore priority population,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi said earlier this week. 

PM Modi will launch the rollout of the Covid-19 vaccination drive on January 16 at 10:30 am.

Around 3,006 session sites across all States and UTs will be virtually connected during the launch and around 100 persons will be vaccinated at each session site on the first day.

Dulloo said inauguration ceremonies would be held both in Jammu and Kashmir divisions.

“In Jammu Government Medical College, Lt-Governor Manoj Sinha will be present while at SKIMS Hospital, Soura, in Srinagar, Advisor to LG Rajeev Rai Bhatnagar inaugurate the proceedings,” Dulloo said.

Jammu and Kashmir received the first shipment of 1.46 lakh Covi shield doses of Covid-19 vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and University of Oxford, manufactured by Pune-based Serum Institute of India (SII).


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