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50% teens across Delhi vaccinated with first dose

🔴 Starting today, districts to identify homeless children, those at shelter homes, vaccinate them

Written by Gayathri Mani | New Delhi |
Updated: January 17, 2022 9:13:35 am
Covid, Covid-19, Covid vaccine, Covid-19 vaccine, vaccination, jabs, shots, coronavirus, coronavirus vaccine, Delhi news, Delhi city news, New Delhi, India news, Indian Express News Service, Express News Service, Express News, Indian Express India News10 lakh teens are eligible for the shot. (Prem Nath Pandey)

More than 50% of children aged 15-17 years have received their first Covid vaccine dose, within two weeks of the immunisation drive opening for them.

According to officials, 500-600 government and private schools across the city have achieved 100% first dose coverage while the remaining schools will achieve 90% by next week. To cover the rest, especially school dropouts and children who are homeless or at shelter homes, district authorities will begin doorstep vaccination from Monday under the ‘Har Ghar Dastak’ scheme at slums, JJ clusters, and shelter homes.

A senior government official said: “Currently, districts have vaccinated more than 50% of children in Delhi. The participation of schools and the Directorate of Education in the vaccination drive has helped a lot — many schools have asked for camps to be set up on their premises while others are writing letters individually to government dispensaries near them to set up vaccination camps… Government school principals and teachers are personally monitoring the vaccination status of each child as well.”

The 11 district authorities have also tied up with several NGOs to vaccinate open school students, children at shelter homes, and street kids. “There are several children in Delhi who have dropped out from schools during the pandemic or migrated. Now, all districts have been directed to focus on street children and those in shelter homes. An aggressive campaign has been started to cover all children (with one dose) by February 21,” said the official.

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Vaccination for this age group started on January 3. As per officials, the estimated teenage population in Delhi is 10,14,000, of which 5,65,777 have been inoculated with one dose of Covaxin as of January 16.

As per data shared by the Delhi government, Northwest Delhi takes the lead in vaccinating the most number of children — 72,696. It is followed by Southwest Delhi at 70,980; Northeast Delhi at 66,780; Southeast Delhi at 56,504; and East Delhi at 52,120.

New district has the lowest figures, vaccinating only 36,360 children. It is followed by Central Delhi at 38,237.

Savita Drall, Deputy Director of Education, Northwest Delhi B-II, said, “There has been a huge response from parents; several schools are even getting calls from parents of children in mid-level classes. The Directorate is closely monitoring the drive and taking vaccination status reports of children from each school. By next week, schools will achieve 80-90% vaccination. Only 10% parents are still hesitant to get their children vaccinated…”

Among schools that have vaccinated all students in the 15-17 age group is Apeejay School, Pitampura. Speaking to The Indian Express, principal Veena Goyal said: “We want our children to come back to school. It is not just important for academic reasons, but for their social, emotional, and mental health. Being locked up at home for almost two years now, many of them are suffering from isolation syndrome. Vaccination is going to be a big step in giving confidence to parents to send them back to school.”

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