January 22, 2021 2:15:35 am
To accelerate the corona vaccination drive, Punjab Health Minister Balbir Singh Sidhu Thursday said the state government has increased the vaccination sites from 59 to 134 to ensure maximum coverage.
This comes even as the response to the vaccination drive in Punjab remains below the desired level with only 38 per cent of the targeted health workers getting the shot on Thursday.
According to a Health Department data, only 4,852 health workers got themselves vaccinated out of the target of 12,872 on Thursday. During previous sessions on Saturday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, 1,327, 1,992, 2,249 and 2,003 health workers came me forward for vaccination, respectively.
Punjab is among the states that received lukewarm response to the vaccination drive on the day of its roll out. The health officials had attributed hesitancy among government sector health workers as one of the reasons for it.
During Thursday’s vaccination drive at 134 sites in Punjab, Ferozepur, Barnala, Fatehgarh Sahibs and Fazilka districts turned out to be poor performers with the coverage ranging from seven to 11 per cent, as per the data. Jalandhar, Ludhiana and Hoshiarpur saw maximum health workers getting the shots.
Meanwhile, the state Health Department has started reaching out to health workers who have doubts over the safety of the vaccine. “We are telling health workers that there is no need to worry and they should come forward and get themselves vaccinated,” said an official.
Doctors are getting themselves vaccinated to boost the confidence of health workers who are still hesitant to get the shots, said the official.
Meanwhile, Sidhu said a feature of “allot beneficiary” has been added in the vaccinator module. The feature has been added to facilitate maximum utilisation of the staff deployed at the session sites so that they can cater to the optimal number of beneficiaries per session.
He said earlier, only such additional beneficiaries could be added whose names already existed in the database generated by the CoWIN portal for a particular session but now there is a provision to add new beneficiaries at the sites as well for inclusion in the ongoing session.
Sidhu said the state had received 2.04 lakh doses of Covishield vaccine on January 12 and 1.96 lakh doses on January 19 while a total of 12,467 beneficiaries have been vaccinated so far.
15 more deaths, 181 new cases in Punjab
The Covid-19 death toll in Punjab rose to 5,535 Thursday with 15 more fatalities, while 181 new cases took the infection count to 1,71,316, as per a medical bulletin.
There are 2,343 active cases in the state currently, it said. Of the new cases, Mohali reported 44, Ludhiana 35 and Jalandhar 20.
A total of 227 patients were discharged after recovering from infection, taking the overall recoveries to 1,63,438, the bulletin said. Nine critical patients are on ventilator support while 81 are on oxygen support, the bulletin said.
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