Gujarat COVID-19 dry run: 'Beneficiaries' undergo dummy vaccination
(Sourced from PTI)
Identified beneficiaries are undergoing dummy vaccination at various centers in Gandhinagar and Rajkot districts of Gujarat on the second day of the two-day COVID-19 vaccination dry run on Tuesday. The dry run is being carried out to test the laid out mechanisms for vaccination and to provide insights into any gaps to be addressed before the commencement of the actual vaccination drive.
Gujarat, one of the four states chosen by the Central Government, has identified 19 sites to conduct the dry runs. The Gandhinagar Municipal Corporation has identified 125 beneficiaries in the city, health workers being the first, and a total of 1,500 vaccinators have been trained. The booths where the mock vaccination drive is being conducted have three rooms- for waiting, vaccinating, and observing.
The dry run consists of several steps like the time taken for dispatch of a vaccine from a center to a booth; scrutiny of beneficiary details in Co-WIN software developed by the Union Health Ministry; training vaccinators; creating facilities for vaccine storage, among others.
The dummy vaccine was dispatched from the Urban Health Centre in Gandhinagar to four centers located at Primary Health Center, Community Health Center, civil hospital, and a private hospital. "We received a list of beneficiaries from Co-WIN software. Trained vaccinators have been deputed in three rooms created for different purposes at these booths," said Dr. MH Solanki, Chief District Health Officer, Gandhinagar.
A beneficiary said that the process was easy to understand and a vaccinator explained all the vital details. "I first went to the waiting room, where my details were verified. After vaccination, I was given a slip mentioning details, such as my name, time at which I was administered vaccine, contact details in case I need emergency help," a woman health worker said.
World Health Organization representative Dr. Aniket Rana said the dry run was vital and it was being conducted as per the training protocol offered for preparedness on aspects like how the software developed for the purpose would work, and other operational aspects. The Central government will be informed about the gaps and the hurdles faced.
However, he said, public participation remains the biggest challenge. "Even if we are fully prepared, but if people's participation is not proper, the exercise will fail. We need to build confidence among people so that they can approach us for a vaccination with confidence," Dr. Rana said. "Operationally, we are prepared...The dry run is aimed to build confidence among the public," he added.
Gujarat government has already identified 4.31 lakh health workers, 6.93 lakh front line workers, 1.03 crore citizens above the age of 50, and 2.67 lakh citizens under the age of 50 with severe comorbidities, for the first phase of the COVID-19 vaccination drive. Currently, Gujarat has 2,195 cold chain points that can store up to one crore doses of coronavirus vaccine, the government said.