Second COVID vaccination dry run across nation today

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As a simulation of the actual execution of the COVID-19 vaccine roll-out that is expected to begin in a few days, another round of dry run will be conducted in all districts across states and UTs, except UP and Haryana, on January 8 to ensure efficient planning and management of the immunization process.

Each district will identify three types of session sites, similar to the previous dry run conducted on January 2, including a public health facility (district hospital/medical college), private health facility, and rural or urban outreach sites, the Union health ministry said on Wednesday.

In Uttarakhand, the day-long activity in preparing for COVID vaccination will be held in all 13 districts. The mock drill will be administered at 130 health centers across the state, 10 each in each district.

The country’s drugs regulator on Sunday approved Oxford-AstraZeneca’s Covishield and the indigenously developed Covaxin of Bharat Biotech for restricted emergency use in the country.

The entire planning of the vaccination drive including beneficiary registration, microplanning, and vaccination at the planned session site will be tested under the leadership of the District Collector or District Magistrate during the dry run.

The dry run will also familiarize the state, district, block, and hospital-level officers on all aspects of the COVID vaccine rollout.

The Union health ministry will be in constant touch with the states and UTs throughout the day to seek feedback, provide support, and ensure timely resolution of the identified challenges before the actual vaccination roll-out.

To facilitate the entire vaccination process, a software named ‘Co-WIN’ has been developed by the health ministry for real-time information on vaccine stocks, their storage temperature, and individualized tracking of beneficiaries for the coronavirus vaccine.

This software will assist the program managers across all levels in the conduct of the vaccination sessions. A dedicated 24×7 call center has also been established for technical queries of Co-WIN users. The cold chain infrastructure (like walk-in-freezers, walk-in-coolers, ice-lined refrigerators, deep freezers) along with sufficient supplies of syringes and other logistics have been ensured to begin the COVID-19 vaccination drive.

Around 1.7 lakh vaccinators and 3 lakh vaccination team members have been trained on the process to be followed at the vaccination sites which include beneficiary verification, vaccination, cold chain and logistics management, bio-medical waste management, AEFI management, and reporting on Co-WIN software.

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