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Friday, March 05, 2021

Selfie booths to badges, hospitals go all in to boost vaccination numbers

6,967 healthcare workers took the Covid vaccine on Saturday — 86% of target.

Written by Astha Saxena | New Delhi |
January 24, 2021 2:59:55 am
nationwide inoculation drive, health ministry, COVID-19 cases in india, Cowin app, Coronavirus cases in india, Rapid Assessment System, Rajesh Bhushan, india news, indian express34-year-old Manish Kumar became the first person to receive the vaccine against the novel coronavirus at All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Delhi. (Express File Photo by Amit Mehra)

From selfie booths to special badges, hospitals in the city are going the extra mile to ensure more healthcare workers come forward to get the Covid vaccine. In Delhi, 25,762 healthcare workers have been administered the vaccine in five days, with 6,967 getting the shot on Saturday — while the turnout was slow on the first three days, it picked up pace on Thursday and Saturday after several hospitals allowed out-of-turn shots for healthcare workers. 24 people reported AEFI (adverse event following immunisation).

Dr Ajeet Jain, nodal officer of Covid-19 at Delhi government’s Rajiv Gandhi Super Speciality Hospital, said the administration has been counselling healthcare workers daily to motivate them to come forward for the vaccination. The hospital, which is also the sole storage facility for the vaccine, has so far inoculated 174 healthcare workers, lowest among the top government hospitals in the

first four days. The hospital, however, saw 100 vaccinations on Saturday.

“The response so far has been lukewarm as many healthcare workers are hesitant to get a shot of the vaccine. A separate Q&A session was organised at our auditorium to bust myths among staff. We are also planning to give special badges saying ‘vaccinated and protected’ to those getting vaccinated at our hospital,” said Dr Jain.

At Lok Nayak Hospital, the administration is sharing photographs of each staff member getting inoculated on its WhatsApp group to motivate the remaining healthcare workers. “We have created a ‘selfie point’ for those getting vaccinated so they can be promoted on social media. As soon as the beneficiary comes out of the vaccination centre, the staff outside the room hands them a rose while others cheer,” said Dr Suresh Kumar, medical director of the hospital.

On Thursday, the hospital, which saw a very low turnout initially, became the first government hospital to vaccinate 100 people in a day. It achieved its target on Saturday as well.

On Saturday, the city completed the first week of the mass immunisation programme of healthcare workers for Covid-19. There are 81 sites in the city with a target to vaccinate 100 beneficiaries in each centre.

“With the modification in the Co-WIN app, hospitals are now being allowed to vaccinate even those whose names are not on the list. The number of doses will also increase at the sites as per availability. By the end of next week, we hope to increase the number of sites to 175 in Delhi,” said Dr Suneela Garg, a public health expert who has also been appointed to the Covid-19 task force for the Delhi vaccination programme.


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