Daijiworld Media Network - Bengaluru (SP)
Bengaluru, May 16: The interval for getting a second dose of the Covid vaccine has been extended again. Covishield vaccine will be administered after 12 weeks of getting the first dose. In the case of Covaxin, the minimum gap between the first and the second dose has been maintained as six weeks.
This decision was taken at the meeting of coronavirus workforce held here on Saturday May 15. Based on the stock position, the workforce will decide on vaccinating the 18-44 age group force later.
The workforce has found some solutions to handle prevailing problems relating to vaccinating the people. Henceforth, Covaxin will be administered only as the second dose and this will be given to those who got the first dose over six weeks back. In the case of those who have crossed the age of 45, Covishield vaccine will be administered on priority. The second dose will be given only after the completion of 12 weeks from the first dose. This was stated by deputy chief minister and president of Covid workforce, Dr Ashwath Narayan.
He stated that the workforce will decide on the date from which the vaccination programme for the 18-44 age group can be begiun, based on the positin of stock. "An app is being developed for this purpose. Once it is linked to the Cowin portal, we will start vaccinating people in this age group," he explained. He said that discussions were also held about extending vaccination programme to the frontline workers and those working in essential services.
The minister said that the vaccination programme will be undertaken in spacious school buildings, playgrounds of schools, stadiums etc as administering of vaccines in primary health centres and hospitals is improper because of the risk of spread of infection. He said that the workforce has decided to cover people who have been handling the funerals of the deceased Covid patients as frontline workers and cover them under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana insurance.
On the oxygen front, the DCM said that new oxygen policy will be framed within four to five days covering production of oxygen in the state, use, installation of basic infrastructure development units, oxygen generator, bottling units, generator maintenance etc. The workforce also decided to use a thousand machines developed by DRDO for regulating oxygen usage on an experimental basis. He said that 900 automatic machines (Rs 10,000) and 100 manual machines (Rs 6,000) will be produced and installed in nine districts which do not have oxygen bottling units.
Dr Ashwath Narayan also said that it has been decided to discontinue home isolation in slums of rural and urban areas, adding that all the infectd people from these places will be shifted to Covid care centres.