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Maharashtra’s vaccine stocks may last only for a couple of days

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on April 08, 2021

State needs 40 lakh vaccines per week so that the monthly target of vaccinating 1.6 crore people can be achieved

The Covid-19 vaccine stocks in Maharashtra have reached a critical low, and will not last last more than a couple of days. The Centre needs to immediately release at least 40 lakh vaccines so that it can take care of vaccination for at least one week, said State Health Minister, Rajesh Tope on Thursday.

Addressing his second press conference in 24 hours, Tope said that latest release order of vaccines shows that Maharashtra will get 7.5 lakh doses, Madhya Pradesh 40 lakh, Gujarat 30 lakh and Haryana 24 lakh. These numbers are self-explanatory, Maharashtra is being discriminated, he said.

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Tope said that he has been in constant touch with Union Health Minister, Harsh Vardhan for getting the stocks. The State needs 40 lakh doses per week so that the monthly target of vaccinating 1.6 crore people can be achieved.

The real picture of vaccine distribution is much different. Maharashtra's population is 12 crore, while Gujarat’s population is 6 crore. But Gujarat has higher supply of vaccines than Maharashtra, he said.

He said that the health is a State subject, but Maharashtra Government is not intervening in the matter of vaccine procurement and distribution. As the Central Government has clearly said that vaccine production, supply and distribution needs to be fully under its control.

Video conference with PM

The State Health Minister said that this evening there is a video conference with the Prime Minister in which major issues facing Maharashtra such as shortage of vaccine, Remdesivir injections supply and price control, supply of medical oxygen from nearby States to Maharashtra and ventilator availability would be raised.

He said Remdesivir injections supply is happening, but it is also getting used up rapidly. Therefore, additional efforts are being made even at State Government level by talking to pharmaceutical companies for additional supply. The price of the injections needs to capped at ₹1,200 to ₹1,400 so that it remains affordable for all. Irrational use of the drug also needs to avoided, he said.

He added that today there is an adequate supply of medical oxygen in the State but given the rising number of patients, the stocks may not last. The issue would be raised with the Prime Minister, requesting for additional supply from neighbouring States, he said.

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Published on April 08, 2021

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