Covid-19: States cite shortages of vaccine as India opens vaccination for 18+ years

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Updated: May 01, 2021 11:28 AM

Last month, the country witnessed the highest demand for COVID vaccines in a month. According to reports, about 90.50 million doses were administered by 6:30 PM on April 30, 2021.

There are also reports emerging that the priority group i.e. those above 45 years, is also not getting vaccines despite pre-booked appointments.There are also reports emerging that the priority group i.e. those above 45 years, is also not getting vaccines despite pre-booked appointments.

As India began the vaccination drive for the age group of 18-44 years from today onwards, several states put on hold the planned nationwide COVID-19 immunisation programme citing paucity of the vaccine.

Last month, the country witnessed the highest demand for COVID vaccines in a month. According to reports, about 90.50 million doses were administered by 6:30 PM on April 30, 2021.

According to the data available with the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the country administered around 64.36 million doses in the first three months this year —3.71 million in January; 10.05 million in February; and 50.60 million doses in March.

There are also reports emerging that the priority group i.e. those above 45 years, is also not getting vaccines despite pre-booked appointments.

The MoHFW in a statement dismissed the allegation as raised by several states regarding shortages of vaccines. In a statement, the ministry said that it had provided 159.60 million doses of vaccines so far to states and Union Territories at free of cost. It further added that around 148.98 million doses waste. Several states such as Delhi, Uttarakhand, West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra and Punjab have already declared their inability to start the COVID-19 vaccination above 18 years, citing shortages of adequate doses of vaccine.

Speaking to news agency ANI, Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar on Saturday stated that as there are shortages, the vaccination centres in Pune has been closed for the next two days. “We had planned a big event for today but we received only 3 lakh doses. Out of that 20,000 have been given to the Pune district. Today we don’t have vaccines to inoculate people aged 45 yrs & above. Hence vaccination centres in Pune dist are closed for the next 2 days,” Pawar told ANI.

In the last 24 hours, India reported its highest single-day rise of 4,01,993 coronavirus infections and 3,523 deaths. At present, the country’s active cases stand at 32,68,710. A total of 15,49,89,635 have been vaccinated so far.

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