New Delhi, Oct 23: Rajesh Bhushan, Union Health Secretary reviewed the progress of COVID-19 vaccination with Health Secretaries and Mission Directors of National Health Mission (NHM) of states and UTs, through video conference (VC) today. The focus of the meeting was to urge the states and UTs to increase the pace of the countrywide vaccination and coverage of the second dose. This comes in the backdrop of the country achieving the milestone of administering 100 crore doses on October 21.
Highlighting the sizeable number of eligible beneficiaries who have not received their 2nd dose of vaccine, the Union Health Secretary urged the states and UTs to focus on those beneficiaries who are waiting for their second dose after their interval period has been over.
States/UTs were also urged to improve the momentum of vaccination and accelerate the coverage as the country moves forward to vaccinate all the eligible population by end of the year under the nation-wide COVID vaccination drive. So, far 71.24 Cr first doses covering 76% of the eligible population and 30.06 Cr second doses covering 32.0% of the eligible population has been administered the COVID vaccines. Line list of due beneficiaries COVID-19 Vaccination Centre wise (and therefore also district wise) is available on the CoWIN platform the states were requested to access the same. The Secretary noted that the detailed line-lists of due beneficiaries can be utilized for preparing a district-wise 2nd dose administration plan involving the District Magistrate for execution in a time-bound manner. It was suggested for states/UTs to review the progress of such district-wise plan daily, to ensure saturation of all eligible beneficiaries.
States and UTs were also advised to identify and prioritize districts having low coverage for focused action and explore requirement for mobilization efforts, addressing local challenges, need for additional COVID Vaccination Centres and improving access in rural areas. They were also requested to share their strategies to enhance second dose coverage.
Dr. Manohar Agnani, Additional Secretary (Health) and other senior officials of the Health Ministry were present in the meeting along with Principal Secretary (Health), Additional Chief Secretary (Health) and State Surveillance Officer of the states/UTs.