Maharashtra is facing a shortage of Covaxin, which has been prescribed for the 15-18 age group by the Central government. Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray will be placing the State’s demand for 40 lakh more doses to Prime Minister Narendra Modi at a videoconference on Thursday.
The State government has also clarified that restrictions implemented are unlikely to be lifted before the end of January, as curve of new COVID patients does not seem to be flattening.
“Maharashtra has around 60 lakh students in the age group of 15-18 and 35% of them have been given first dose. As per the directions from the Central government, this age group should be given Covaxin only. We are getting reports from several districts about its shortage. We have briefed our Chief Minister regarding it and he will be making the demand for more vaccines in a meeting with the Prime Minister on Thursday,” said Maharashtra Public Health Minister Rajesh Tope.
The State hopes to vaccinate the entire 15-18 age group in next 10 to 12 days with the first dose.
Mr. Tope said that the State will also be making a demand of 50 lakh doses of Covishield as reports of its shortage are coming in.
More Covishield doses
“Since we have begun giving booster shots, we will require more doses of Covishield as well,” he said. As per the data, 90% of the State’s population has received first dose while 62% has been given the second dose.
The State Cabinet on Wednesday discussed the dropping rate of COVID vaccination in the State.
“We are giving 6.50 lakh vaccines daily. But we had achieved more than 8 lakh doses in a day. District Collectors and Municipal Commissioners are being informed to increase the pace,” he said, pointing out that decrease in number of patients in last three days cannot be seen as flattening of curve. “We should not come to immediate conclusion. Curve is not flattening as of now. Cases are rising but only breather is that more than 86% are home quarantine and less than 3% require oxygen or ventilator. Restrictions and double vaccination is the only way out of it. Therefore, I do not see restrictions being lifted till January end,” he said.
He informed that the State is presently using 400 MT of oxygen out of which 150 MT is for COVID patients. and rest is for non-Covid patients. “We have already said that lockdown will be implemented the moment oxygen use exclusively for Covid patients touches 700 MT. But this does not seem to be happening,” he said.