Groups working for differently-abled take stock of people for door step vaccination

A WhatsApp group has been formed to clarify queries from NGOs

Updated - May 27, 2021 11:34 am IST

Published - May 24, 2021 05:40 pm IST



As Greater Chennai Corporation gears up for door-step vaccination for persons with disabilities in the age group of 18 to 44 years, some organisations have started to create a database of their students who are ready to take the jab.

Vidya Sagar, for instance, has sent two lists to GCC of students and alumni who are ready to take the jab.

“In the first list, we had 65 people and 35 in the second. Our third list is also getting ready,” says Smitha Sadasivan, member of Vidya Sagar and Disability Rights Alliance.

Besides alumni, close to 150 students are enrolled with the centre, she says.

Apart from collating the name, address, contact number and type of disability, the name of the caregiver is also being included.

“We have asked the Department that caregivers must also be included in the door step vaccination drive,” says Smitha. DRA has also asked the Commissioner for the Welfare of the Differently-Abled to organise a session with a doctor to clarify doubts around the vaccine and its effect on those with profound disabilities.

P. Varadharajan, the parent of a son with disability, received a call recently from the Department based on the information he submitted. “How will young adults express how comfortable they are is a question that has been bothering me?,” says Varadharajan. “Otherwise, door-step vaccination is going to make it easy for many youngsters as they don’t have to be transported to the UPHC or a hospital and be made to wait.”

Sri Arunodayam, a home for abandoned children with intellectual disabilities, has 40 young adults who are eligible to take the vaccine. The centre has started checking the health records of each of these residents. “Some take medicines for fits and a few have heart-related ailments, so we are consulting with doctors before sending a final list to the department,” says Iyyappan S., founder of the Trust.

A. Susheela, honorary secretary and correspondent, Bala Vihar, says to clarify any nagging doubts with regard to door-to-door vaccination the department has started holding meetings. A WhatsApp group has been formed with officials from the GCC, District Differently-abled Welfare Office and representatives from non governmental organisations.

“We also had the Commissioner for the Differently-abled in a meeting and one question that I asked was who will sign the consent form for those staying in a residential home,” says Susheela, adding that close to 100 adults from its residential home in Kilpauk are above the age of 18.

Another organisation working for the visually impaired say they would not like to take the onus of persuading every student to take the vaccine. “The consent form will be sent to the parents so that they can take a call,” said the member.

Smitha says every centre can collate its own list and send it either to the District Disability Office or GCC.

Persons with disabilities could register their names through 18004250111 and 9700799993.

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