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Vaccination drive for 18-44 will ‘grow and stabilise’, says Health Ministry official

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on April 30, 2021

‘Will start in States that have coordinated with manufacturers’

Reiterating its home isolation guidelines, the Health Ministry said on Friday that any suspect covid case has to be clinically assigned as mild/asymptomatic case by the treating medical officer to opt for home isolation.

While asymptomatic are laboratory confirmed cases not experiencing any symptoms and having at least 94 per cent oxygen saturation at room air mild cases are those with upper respiratory tract symptoms, with or without fever but without shortness of breath and having normal oxygen saturation at room air. However, even the caregivers have to be home isolated.

Home isolation is not recommended for the elderly and those with co-morbidities unless they have been evaluated by a medical officer, it said.

Oxygen stocks

Amid oxygen supply crisis the Health Minstry said orders for 1.27 lakh oxygen cylinders have been placed on April 21 and deliveries are expected to start by April end.

These include 54,000 jumbo cylinders and 73,000 regular cylinders.

Additional 500 PSA plants of indigenous technology are being installed by DRDO. Besides that 551 PSA plants have been sanctioned to be implemented by the government, while oxygen is also being imported from Singapore and Abu Dhabi.

Phase-3 vaccination drive is beginning on Saturday but not all between 18-44 years will be able to get anti-covid jabs. The inoculation drive will take off in some States who have coordinated with the vaccine manufacturers from May 1 and gradually it will grow and become stable, Lav Kumar Agarwal, Joint Secretary, Health Ministry said Friday.

‘Time to stabilise’

“Any process which is started takes time to stabilise and grow. The vaccination drive will start in those States where they have coordinated with the vaccine manufacturers. The free vaccination programme by the central government will continue at the same speed. The programme you are talking about is a paid programme or otherwise unless it is subsidised by the State governments, it is that kind of programme,” said Agarwal adding that the centre has already provided more than 15 crore free vaccine doses and it will continue.

Meanwhile, according to the Health Ministry data, more than 2.45 crore beneficiaries have registered on Co-WIN digital platform till 9:30 am on Friday for the inoculation drive beginning from May 1 against Covid-19 pandemic.

“While more than 1.37 crore registered themselves on April 28, more than 1.04 crore registered by the end of April 29,” said the Ministry.

Published on April 30, 2021

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