- Priority groups will be inoculated first, says the Health Ministry
- Covishield and Covaxin have been approved for emergency use in the country
- PM Modi will launch vaccination drive on January 16 via video conference
New Delhi: A day before a massive countrywide vaccination drive against coronavirus is set to commence, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on Friday (January 15) said the step is “probably the beginning of the end” of COVID-19. Speaking at the 146th India Meteorological Department (IMD) foundation day, he, however, cautioned that even if the vaccination drive is on, there should not be lowering of guard and people must follow COVID-19 appropriate behaviour. “Tomorrow is an important day…it is the last phase of the battle against coronavirus. I say, this is probably the beginning of the end of COVID now which is going to start tomorrow,” Mr. Vardhan, who is also Science and Technology and Earth Sciences Minister, said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will launch India’s COVID-19 vaccination drive on January 16 via video conferencing. This will be the world’s largest vaccination programme covering the entire length and breadth of the country and all preparations are in place to initiate the programme.
A total of 3,006 session sites across all states and Union territories will be virtually connected during the launch and around 100 beneficiaries will be vaccinated at each session site on the first day. The vaccination programme is based on principles of priority groups to be vaccinated first. Healthcare workers, both in the government and private sectors, including Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) workers, will receive the vaccine during this phase.
The Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) had earlier this month approved Oxford COVID-19 vaccine Covishield, manufactured by the Serum Institute, and indigenously developed Covaxin of Bharat Biotech for restricted emergency use in the country, paving the way for a massive inoculation drive.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
NDTV – Dettol Banega Swasth India campaign is an extension of the five-year-old Banega Swachh India initiative helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. It aims to spread awareness about critical health issues facing the country. In wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign highlights the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children to prevent maternal and child mortality, fight malnutrition, stunting, wasting, anaemia and disease prevention through vaccines. Importance of programmes like Public Distribution System (PDS), Mid-day Meal Scheme, POSHAN Abhiyan and the role of Aganwadis and ASHA workers are also covered. Only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and become a Swasth or healthy India. The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollution, waste management, plastic ban, manual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene.