The Union government will be providing an additional two crore doses of Covid vaccines by the end of August to vaccinate school teachers.
Mansukh Mandavia, Union health minister, said on Wednesday that two crore additional vaccines would be dispatched to the states to vaccinate school teachers and non-teaching staff in government and private schools on a priority basis. The minister has set a target of vaccinating all school teachers by Teachers’ Day on September 5. The additional doses will be dispatched to states from 27 August.
The country crossed the 60 crore mark in cumulative immunisation with 60.15 crore vaccines administered as on Wednesday. Till late evening 69.17 lakh vaccine doses were administered on Wednesday The daily average vaccinations in August has been around 50-55 lakh jabs per day. The states and union territories (UTs) have a stock of 3.62 crore vaccine doses with them that are yet to be utilised. The average monthly vaccination in June was 38.89 lakh doses and went up to 43.41 lakh in July.
Union health secretary, Rajesh Bhushan chaired a meeting on Wednesday with all States and UTs along with Union pharma secretary, S Aparna, and advised states to focus on enhancing second dose coverage as well as immunization of school teachers and staff. States and UTs have been asked to use the Unified District Information System of Education data and co-ordinate with state education departments, Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan and Navodaya Vidyalaya Sangathan for this vaccination programme.
Citing the case of Kerala where the number of cases have increased post Onam celebration, Bhushan cautioned states over a possible surge in Covid cases during the upcoming festival season.
The policy of maintaining buffer stock of Covid-19 medicines was reviewed during the meeting and states have been allowed to procure and maintain buffer stock of medicines other than the eight essential Covid drugs compulsorily mandated by union health ministry.