India’s COVID-19 vaccination drive is now the world’s fastest
With 1 million COVID-19 shots in just 6 days, India’s vaccination drive becomes the world’s fastest
The Indian government has vaccinated nearly 16 lakh people against COVID-19 since the launch of its mass inoculation drive on January 16. According to the Health Ministry, authorities have administered approximately 10 lakh vaccine shots in just six days, which is significantly higher than that of countries like the US and the UK.
While the US took 10 days to vaccinate 10 lakh people, Britain took 18 days to reach the mark, the health ministry revealed.
As of January 24, the government has carried out 27,920 sessions to inoculate nearly 16 lakh (15,82,201) people across the country.
Taking to Twitter, Union Health Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan dubbed India’s COVID-19 inoculation program as the world’s #LargestVaccineDrive.
The government also added that the programme had a slow start in the initial week, following which the immunisation numbers picked up in the past 7 days with more than 3 lakh healthcare workers getting inoculated against the virus. With this pace, India currently ranks seventh globally in the number of COVID-19 vaccine doses administered. While the current pace of the programme is about 2 lakh vaccine doses in a day, health authorities are expecting the number to increase in the coming days. Healthcare workers are queuing up in large numbers in states like Delhi and Maharashtra to receive the vaccine shot.
India launched its vaccination drive on January 16 with the aim of inoculating 3 crore healthcare and frontline workers in the first phase. After the healthcare workers are secured with the COVID-19 vaccine, frontline workers including the police, municipal workers and armed forces will be given the jab.
As part of the program, the government is providing two vaccines – Covaxin, developed by Bharat Biotech, and Oxford-AstraZeneca’s Covishield vaccine, manufactured by the Serum Institute of India. The two vaccines received the emergency use authorization by the Central Drugs and Standards Committee (CDSCO) earlier this month.
In the next phase, the government is seeking to vaccinate elderly population above the age of 50 years and those with chronic medical conditions such as diabetes and organ transplant.
The union government has also updated the CoWIN platform to fix the glitches both in the app and online portal. The backbone of India’s COVID-19 vaccination drive, CoWIN (Covid Vaccine Intelligence Work) was launched by the Health Ministry for the smooth operation of the immunization drive. Through the app, beneficiaries can register themselves to receive the shot and get information about vaccination centers among other facilities.