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COVID vaccination: Senior citizens, 45 years and above with co-morbidities to get free doses from March 1

Union Minister Prakash Javadekar said that the government will initiate the vaccination drive for citizens from March 1 at both public and private medical facilities.


After carrying out the first phase of the coronavirus vaccination drive for the country’s frontline workers, the Modi government has announced the next phase for senior citizens and people above 45 years of age who have co-morbidities.

Addressing a press conference, Union Minister Prakash Javadekar said that the government will initiate the vaccination drive for citizens from March 1 at both public and private medical facilities. Initially, people above 60 years of age and those above 45 years of age with co-morbidities will be vaccinated at 10,000 government and over 20,000 private vaccination centres, announced the government on Wednesday.

The Modi government has decided to provide the vaccines free of cost at government centres. People who wish to get the vaccination at private hospitals will have to bear the cost themselves.

Announcing the next phase of the country’s vaccination drive, Javadekar said a proposal to this effect was approved at a Union Cabinet meeting, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“While the vaccine will be given for free at government centres, it will be available for a charge, to be decided later, at many private hospitals,” the minister said at a media briefing.

More than 1.2 crore people vaccinated

The government has also said that till February 24 morning, more than 1,21,65,598 through 2,54,356 sessions have been vaccinated. These include 64,98,300 healthcare workers (1st dose), 13,98,400 healthcare workers (2nd dose) and 42,68,898 frontline workers (1st dose).

The second dose of COVID-19 vaccination was started on February 13 for those beneficiaries who have completed 28 days after receipt of the 1st dose. The vaccination of frontline workers (FLWs) started on February 2.

The ministry said 12 states and UTs have administered more than 75 per cent of the registered healthcare workers (HCWs). These are Bihar, Tripura, Odisha, Gujarat, Chhattisgarh, Lakshadweep, Madhya Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Jharkhand, Himachal Pradesh, UP and Rajasthan.

The Union Health Ministry said on Wednesday said that so far nineteen states and union territories have not reported any death due to COVID-19 in a span of 24 hours. The India’s active tally stood at 1,46,907 accounting for 1.33 per cent of the total number of cases.

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Staff reporter at OpIndia

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