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Inoculation drive; India to administer second doses

India to launch the second shot.  The second doses will be given to people who got a coronavirus vaccine 28 days ago. The greatest challenge in front of health workers is to bring back those people who got the first dose. The recipients of first shot will be sent automated SMS messages or direct phone calls to make them take part in the  second dose. Meanwhile the authorities said there is no need that a person who took first dose should take the second dose on a gap of exactly 28 days.

They will be given a window of two weeks which means the doses will need to be taken 4-6 weeks after the first shot. “The second dose can be given any time between four to six weeks. That’s the window period that we have. Though I am eligible to take the shot on February 13, I am most likely to take the second dose on Monday (February 15) as I am away,” said Dr VK Paul, member (health) of Niti Aayog, who took his first Covaxin dose on the launch day of January 16 and is likely to take the shot on Monday.

If the beneficiary is not able to make it on the stipulated day, the states have given the flexibility to reschedule appointments.  Dr Paul said that an alternate date will be given to those who either are not available on the scheduled date assigned to them or miss the slot under certain circumstances.

Since January 16, India has so far vaccinated 7.8 million people with first dose making it the quickest any country.  India has set the deadline of July-end to inoculate 300 million who make up the three priority groups viz. health workers, front line staffs and people are above the age of 50.

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