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Coronavirus | Phase 2 of vaccination begins on March 1 amid a COVID-19 surge

A health technician collecting samples from a man for COVID test at a mobile COVID testing centre in Vijayawada. File   | Photo Credit: GIRI KVS

A day before India opens up vaccination for senior citizens and those above 45 years with co-morbidities, fresh daily COVID-19 infections were above 16,000 for the fourth consecutive day. Excluding Sunday — figures for which are not yet available — the number of fresh weekly infections were close to 120,000 cases. Only on January 28 did India record 18,000 new infections, after which daily cases never touched 15,000 until February 23, when cases have consistently been above 16,000.

Six States — Maharashtra, Kerala, Punjab, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Gujarat — have shown a surge in new cases in the last 24 hours, with about 86% of cases emerging from these States.

Maharashtra reported the highest daily new cases at 8,623. It is followed by Kerala with 3,792 and Punjab with 593 new cases.

About 1.07 crore people has recovered so far with 11,718 patients having recovered and been discharged in the last 24 hours. The recoveries also continue to be dominated by States that are posting an increase. Nearly 85% of the new recovered cases were in six States, with Kerala reporting the maximum number of single day recoveries with 4,650 newly recovered cases. Of them, 3,648 people recovered in Maharashtra in the past 24 hours, followed by 491 in Tamil Nadu.

Coronavirus | Phase 2 of vaccination begins on March 1 amid a COVID-19 surge
 

As on Saturday for which the latest figures are available, 1,43,01,266 vaccine doses have been administered through 2,92,312 sessions. These include vaccination for 6.6 million healthcare workers who have got one dose; 2.4 million with a second dose; and 5.1 million frontline workers with a second dose.

The Centre has also deputed high-level multi-disciplinary teams to Kerala, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, Chhattisgarh, Punjab, Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat, and the UT of Jammu and Kashmir, to ascertain reasons for the surge and coordinate with the State Health Departments in COVID-19 control and containment measures.

To ramp up the COVID-19 vaccination, around 10,000 private hospitals under Ayushman Bharat PMJAY and more than 600 private hospitals under the Central Government Health Scheme will be utilised with prospective beneficiaries having the option to pre-register via a CoWin 2.0 or Arogya Setu app, or walk-in at any of the registered vaccination sites. At least 270 million Indians comprise those over 60 years or above 50 years with co-morbidities.

Those with co-morbidities are expected to get a medical certificate from a registered medical practitioner detailing their condition.

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Printable version | Apr 19, 2021 7:23:15 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/coronavirus-phase-2-of-vaccination-begins-on-march-1-amid-a-covid-19-surge/article33956115.ece

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