While some states continued to display an upward trajectory in fresh covid-19 cases even on Sunday, India is all set to start the second phase of Covid-19 vaccination from Monday for those who are over 60 years of age and for people aged 45 and above with specified co-morbid conditions.
The centre has already written to the states about the commencement of the next phase of the nationwide vaccination program. Vandana Gurnani, additional secretary and mission director of the national health mission (NHM) in a letter written to states on Saturday emphasized the vaccination would be provide free of charge at the government facility while it would be on payment basis in the private health facilities.
“The service charge to be recovered by private hospitals acting as Covid vaccination centres would be subject to a ceiling of ₹100/- per person per dose. In addition, private hospitals will recover ₹150/- per person per dose as cost of vaccine dose. Hence, financial ceiling of the total amount recoverable by the private hospitals is ₹250/- per person per dose. This arrangement will remain effective till further orders," Gurnani said in the letter Mint has reviewed.
Gurnani further said in the letter that when the vaccines are handed over to the private empanelled hospitals under AB-PMJAY, CGHS or states health insurance schemes, the cost of the vaccines at ₹150/- per dose, is to be electronically deposited to immediately by these hospitals, in the bank account of the National Health Authority created in this regard.
To ramp up the Covid-19 vaccination capacity, around 10,000 private hospitals under Ayushman Bharat PMJAY and more than 600 private hospitals under the Central Government Health Scheme will be utilized. Other private hospitals empanelled under State Govts. Health Insurance Scheme can also participate as Covid-19 Vaccination Centres (CVCs).
With speedy vaccination of the population the government aims to control the pandemic which is again seeing disturbing trend of rising cases. Eight States – Maharashtra, Kerala, Punjab, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana and Gujarat- have shown a surge in new covid-19 cases in the last 24 hours, the government said on Sunday.
As the country reported 16,752 new coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours, 86.37% of the new cases are from these six States. According to the latest data available with the union health ministry, Maharashtra continues to report the highest daily new cases at 8,623. It is followed by Kerala with 3,792 while Punjab reported 593 new cases.
India’s total Active Caseload has reached 1,64,511 on Sunday. India’s present active caseload now stands at 1.48% of India’s total Positive Cases which once slid to around 1.2% few week ago.
At least 113 deaths were also reported in the last 24 hours. Six States account for 84.96% of the new deaths. Maharashtra saw the maximum casualties (51). Kerala follows with 18 daily deaths and Punjab reported11 deaths in the last 24 hours, the union health ministry data shows.
The total tally of covid-19 cases on Sunday crawled to 1,10,96,618 and the toll was scaled up to 157,088.
The Centre has been engaging with the States and UTs exhibiting higher caseload of active cases and those reporting a spike in the daily new COVID cases. The Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Guaba chaired a high-level review meeting on Saturday with the States/UTs exhibiting a surge in cases including Telangana, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, MP, Gujarat, Punjab, J&K and West Bengal.
Cabinet Secretary reiterated that States need to maintain a continued rigorous vigil in terms of containing the spread and not squander away the gains of the collective hard work of the last year. They were advised not to lower their guard, enforce COVID Appropriate Behaviour and deal firmly with violations. It was strongly underlined that they need to follow effective surveillance strategies in respect of potential super spreading events. Need for effective testing, comprehensive tracking, prompt isolation of positive cases and quick quarantine of close contacts were also strongly emphasized, the cabinet secretary said.
The Centre has also deputed high-level multi-disciplinary teams to Kerala, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, Chhattisgarh, Punjab, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Jammu and Kashmir (UT) to ascertain reasons for the surge and coordinate with the State Health Departments in covid-19 control and containment measures.
On the front of COVID Vaccination so far, a total of 1,43,01,266 vaccine doses have been administered through 2,92,312 sessions, as per the provisional report available until Sunday. These include 66,69,985 healthcare workers (HCWs) (1st dose), 24,56,191 HCWs (2nd dose) and 51,75,090 frontline workers (FLWs) (1st dose).
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