COVID-19 vaccination guidelines: How spirit of 'Lok Kalyan' can help economically weaker sections get inoculated

The Centre will allocate vaccines to states based on criteria such as population, disease burden and the progress of vaccination

FP Staff June 08, 2021 14:39:23 IST
COVID-19 vaccination guidelines: How spirit of 'Lok Kalyan' can help economically weaker sections get inoculated

Representational image. PTI

The Centre on Tuesday has issued revised COVID-19 vaccination guidelines, a day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced changes to the policy in an address to the nation.

As per the new policy, the Union government will procure 75 percent of the vaccines being produced by the manufacturers in the country. These doses are to be administered by the States/UTs free of cost to all citizens as per priority.

Domestic vaccine manufacturers have also been given the option to provide vaccines directly to private hospitals. This would be restricted to 25 percent of their monthly production.

For the vaccination doses provided free of cost by the Union government, the priority is laid down as follows:

-Healthcare Workers
-Front Line Workers
-Citizens more than 45 years of age
-Citizens whose second dose has become due
-Citizens 18 years & above

However, within the population between 18 and 44 years of age, states/UTs have been asked to decide their own prioritisation after factoring in the vaccine supply schedule.

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The Centre will allocate vaccines to states based on criteria such as population, disease burden and the progress of vaccination. Wastage of vaccine will affect the allocation negatively.

The government said to promote the spirit of “Lok Kalyan”, it will encourage use of non-transferable Electronic Vouchers which can be redeemed at private vaccination centres.

"This would enable people to financially support vaccination of Economically Weaker Sections at private vaccination centres," the government said. In other words, it would enable affluent people to pay for the vaccination of low-income individuals at private centres.

All government and private vaccination centers are also to provide onsite registration facility on CoWIN platform to pre-book vaccination appointments. This has been done to minimize any inconvenience to citizens. The states can also optimally utilise Common Service Centres and Call Centres to facilitate prior booking by citizens. These measures too are aimed at making the inoculation process easier for those from economically weaker sections and those with limited access to digital technology.

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