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Opinion

Covid-19 Vaccine: Dry Test Today to Test Systems

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As India prepares to launch the world’s largest immunization campaign, the government is conducting a trial Saturday to assess its ability and willingness to deliver vaccines to hundreds of millions of people, including many in remote corners of the country.

The government has already successfully conducted a two-day pilot Covid-19 vaccination campaign in eight districts of four states from December 28 to 29, but Saturday’s trial is more ambitious in scope, covering all state capitals, and some states are also testing the process. ‘efficiency in districts located in difficult terrain or that are poorly connected.

In the national capital, the drills will be held in three locations: the Daryaganj Primary Health Center, the government-run Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital, and the Venkateshwara Private Hospital.

Twenty-five beneficiaries, all health workers, will be present at each site and the vaccination team will demonstrate how they will be registered, how the vaccines will be administered, and how they will be monitored for adverse events, if any.

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All sites will have a three-room configuration: a waiting room, a vaccination room, and an observation room. A team of four will be present, one to verify documents, another to verify the beneficiary registration, one to monitor the person, and one to control the crowd.

The teams will have a vaccine carrier (cold box) that will be used to transport the vaccines at the temperature at which they should be stored from the points of the cold chain to the vaccination sites.

The Union Health Minister, Dr. Harsh Vardhan, also held a review meeting on the trial with the Delhi authorities. “The goal of this test is to prepare everyone for the great immunization campaign. There must be good communication between the medical teams and the district administration to make the vaccination smooth. This will also allow us to know if the registered beneficiaries are receiving messages to reach the stand and if they will later receive an electronic certificate. This will also clear up the beneficiary list divisions and any doubts about the CoWIN platform, ”he said.

“Maharashtra and Kerala are likely to schedule the drill in major cities in addition to their capital. The purpose of the trial for the introduction of the Covid-19 vaccine is to assess the operational feasibility in using the Co-WIN application in the field setting, test the links between planning and implementation, and identify challenges and guide the way to go before actual implementation. . This is also expected to give confidence to program managers at various levels, ”the Union Health Ministry said in a statement issued Thursday.

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Co-WIN refers to the Covid Vaccine Intelligence Network, which will help both health authorities and the public to play their respective roles in the immunization campaign.

Saturday’s test will involve 25 healthcare workers eligible to receive the vaccine, who will be the beneficiaries of the test. States will prepare vaccination sites, upload beneficiary details to Co-WIN, and basically do everything they will do during the actual vaccination. As detailed in Thursday’s statement, the trial will also provide states with an opportunity to check sites for space, electricity and connectivity, logistics, etc.

It will also help them discover aspects of vaccine supply, storage and logistics, including cold chain management. States have already been training vaccine administrators and preparing beneficiary details.

So far some 150,000 vaccinators have been trained, covering more than 700 districts. States are also increasing helpline 104 (to be used in addition to 1075) for any vaccine or software related inquiries.

The focus of the trial will be on the management of any possible adverse event after immunization (AEFI). In addition, states will also emphasize adherence and management of infection control practices at the session site to prevent disease transmission.

The drill will also include simultaneous monitoring and review at the block and district level, and comment preparation.

“A detailed plan with what should and should not be done has been shared with the States. The test consists of observing any gaps that can be seen in the ground while the plan is being executed. It is destined to mobilize all aspects except the vaccine, ”said a senior health ministry official who asked not to be identified.

The first round of the drill took place in Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Gujarat, Punjab in two districts each.

“No major operational issues were noted during this trial. All States expressed their confidence in IT’s operational guidelines and platform for the implementation of large-scale programs, ”the ministry statement said.

Hindustan Times

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