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Over 15 lakh eligible children of Haryana to be administered Covid jab, says state Health Minister

Chandigarh (Haryana) : Haryana health minister Anil Vij on Sunday said that all preparations have been completed to administer COVID vaccine to over 15 lakh eligible beneficiaries between the age group of 15 and 18 in the state. For such beneficiaries, the vaccination option will be "Covaxin" only. The COVID-19 vaccination drive for children falling in the age group of 15-18 years is scheduled to commence from January 3 for which the registrations started on January 1. Over 3.5 lakh beneficiaries of the 15-18 age group have registered themselves on the CoWIN portal to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, as on Sunday morning. Vij was speaking in a virtual meeting on 'COVID19 review and vaccination' to the Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya. "On the call of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the work of administering COVID-19 vaccine to 15.40 lakh children in the age group of 15 to 18 will be started from Monday, January 3, 2022. The state is all set to vaccinate the children," said Vij. The state health minister informed that 98 per cent of the population have been administered the first dose and 70 per cent of the people have received the second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Vij said, "School colleges, polytechnics, coaching centres, Anganwadis have been closed in the state. People who are not vaccinated have been stopped from going to offices, restaurants, banquet halls. Strictness will be increased if infection increases." The state minister further informed that the state government has imposed new restrictions. "The districts are divided into two parts, where there is more infection, they are kept in category A, in which there are Gurugram, Faridabad, Sonipat, Ambala, Panchkula. Markets here will be closed at 5 pm and all offices will run with 50 per cent capacity."Vij said that taking lessons from the second wave of coronavirus, it was decided by the state government that it would be mandatory to set up Pressure swing adsorption (PSA) plants in government and private hospitals with more than 50 beds available. State Minister informed, "PSA plants have been commissioned in 84 government hospitals. Similarly, 54 private hospitals have also set up plants. Efforts are being made to set up this plant in the remaining hospitals soon so that Haryana can become completely self-sufficient in the matter of oxygen." In view of the rising COVID-19 cases, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare Mansukh Mandaviya convened a meeting to review public health preparedness and vaccination progress with Ministers of State and Union Territories on Sunday. Union Minister also urged states to ensure that the healthcare workers and frontline workers are fully vaccinated, as they form the vulnerable categories. While appreciating the efforts of States/UTs in achieving the national average of 90 per cent coverage of first dose vaccination of all eligible adults, he urged those states, whose progress of vaccination is below the national average, to ramp up their vaccination campaign. States were directed to prepare a weekly plan to catch up and exceed the average national vaccination coverage and review the implementation of this plan on a daily basis at the level of Secretary/ACS Health with special emphasis in 5 poll-bound states of Punjab, Goa, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, and Manipur. States/UTs were also instructed to ensure the orientation of vaccinators and vaccination team members for vaccination of 15-18 years age-group and the identification of dedicated session sites for vaccination of 15-18 years age-group. Also, states/UTs were advised to share their requirement of vaccine doses through district-wise estimation of beneficiaries using Co-WIN. The Union Health Minister brought the attention of the States/UTs to the fact that collectively, they have only used just over 17 per cent of the available approved funds under the Emergency COVID-19 Response Package (ECRP-II). States/UTs were exhorted to expedite the physical progress under ECRP-II in terms of ICU beds, oxygen beds, Paediatric ICU/HDU beds etc. The Minister also urged States/UTs to effectively use IT tools for telemedicine and teleconsultation, including training and capacity building of human resources, timely availability of ambulances, the readiness of states to operationalize COVID-19 facilities for institutional quarantining, and effective and supervised monitoring of those in home isolation.

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