Kerala

State wants private sector to join vaccination drive

The State will appeal to the Centre to make COVID-19 vaccines available at reasonable rates through drug distributors in the private sector so that the vaccination of the general public can be completed at a faster pace.

Along with strong containment measures, it was essential that the vaccination of the general public against COVID-19 was completed as fast as possible as this would help reduce disease transmission, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan told mediapersons here on Thursday.

The pace at which COVID-19 vaccination was moving now, it would take a very long time before the process could be completed and the general public could be fully vaccinated against the disease. At a time when disease transmission was going up and many States were on the verge of a second COVID-19 wave, vaccination process had to be expedited, he said.

Kerala, especially, is now paying the price for the better containment strategies it adopted to keep COVID-19 from spreading across the population. A chunk of the State’s population still remained susceptible to the disease, while in the neighbouring Karnataka, nearly 46% of the population may already have been exposed to the virus (according to ICMR sero survey) and hence was immune.

Considering this special situation in the State, Kerala should be allocated additional vaccine stocks, Kerala has written to the Centre. The Health Department is already in touch with the Centre about making vaccination available to a section of the priority groups who had missed receiving the first vaccine dose.

Mr. Vijayan claimed that it was because of better data integrity that Kerala appeared to be faring worse when it comes to COVID-19 transmission. If Kerala seemed to be having more cases when the rest of India did not, it just meant that Kerala was effectively detecting and reporting more cases, he claimed. However, some vested interests were more interested in overlooking the State’s achievements in managing the pandemic and tarnishing the State’s image, Mr. Vijayan added.

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Printable version | Apr 12, 2021 6:53:28 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/state-wants-private-sector-to-join-vaccination-drive/article33934908.ece

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