Ahead of the Covid-19 vaccine dry run on 8 January, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan met the health ministers of states and Union Territories at 12.30 on Thursday.
Guiding the state health ministers on conducting the dry run, Harsh Vardhan said, “Feedback on the dry run of Covid vaccine in four states was reviewed. We have made improvements based on the feedback. Tomorrow dry run will be done in 33 states and Union Territories.”
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“Covid-19 vaccines ‘Covishield’ and ‘Covaxin’ are on the verge of being available in the country. Our efforts are to ensure seamless last-mile delivery of the vaccine,” Harsh Vardhan said.
The Health Minister also said that priority groups have been decided for vaccination as advised by the experts’ group formed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
On spike in coronavirus cases, he said, “Maharashtra, Kerala and Chhattisgarh have seen a sudden spike in coronavirus cases recently. This gives us a warning that we shouldn’t forget precautions and continue our fight against Covid-19.”
Meanwhile, news agency ANI reported that the transportation of coronavirus vaccines might begin today or tomorrow.
The Centre has allowed passenger aircraft to transport the Covid-19 vaccines. Pune will be the central hub from where the vaccine distribution will take place, the report said.
Around 41 destinations across the country have been finalised for the delivery of vaccines.
New Delhi and Karnal will be made mini hubs for delivery of coronavirus vaccines in northern India. For the eastern region, Kolkata will be the hub and will also be a nodal point for the northeast.
Chennai and Hyderabad will be the designated points for Southern India.
India has two vaccines against the novel coronavirus which are ready for rollout. One is Covaxin, which has been developed by Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech in collaboration with the Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR) and the National Institute of Virology. The other one is Covishield, a vaccine developed by the University of Oxford and pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca. Its India partner is Pune-based Serum Institute of India.