Karnataka’s wait for COVID-19 vaccine may take months

Karnataka, which has placed orders for three crore doses of COVID-19 vaccines, may have to wait for months before the supply could be completed. In the light of the delay, available doses will be given to those aged above 45 years who are due for the second dose.

Acknowledging the delay in supply, Chief Secretary P. Ravikumar indicated to reporters on Wednesday, “I cannot say how many days it will take. It may even take months.”

Karnataka was not sure about the procurement of Russian vaccine Sputnik, and has sought clarification from the Centre if it can be procured, he added.

He said of the total 3 crore doses that the State has ordered, just about 7 lakh have so far arrived. “The vaccine allotment for the first 15 days of the month is 13 lakh Covishield and one lakh Covaxin doses. However, we have received 7 lakh doses of Covishield and 80,000 doses of Covaxin,” he said.

The State has placed orders for two crore doses of Covishield and one crore doses of Covaxin.

Projecting the need of Karnataka to be about 6.5 crore doses, he said that the State had received about one crore doses since vaccination commenced four months ago. He said that it was now up to vaccine manufacturers to sustain supply.

Mr. Ravikumar also said that if the number of vaccine suppliers increase in the country, the State, which has decided to import vaccines, will have more options. As the State prepares to float a global tender, the Chief Secretary was not sure of its fate since several countries had banned export of vaccines.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa, who chaired a meeting of senior Ministers and officials, directed authorities to provide the second dose of vaccines to the people. He told them to address the confusion prevailing in vaccination efforts in the State.

The Chief Minister is learnt to have told senior officials to keep a tab on the availability of vaccines in each district, and maintain constant communication with manufacturers on future arrivals of vaccines.

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Printable version | Jun 15, 2021 10:28:47 PM |

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