Updated: June 9, 2021 2:54:02 am
Maharashtra officials said on Tuesday the Centre has communicated it could supply nine lakh doses every day from the end of June once manufacturing of Covishield and Covaxin vaccines scale up and Sputnik V is available for distribution. Also, the Centre has informed Maharashtra it will receive 70 lakh doses in June and one crore doses in July, the officials added.
The state has immunised 2.13 lakh people free of cost daily on an average in May, down from 3.25 lakh per day in April. Officials had informed the Centre that the state can fully utilise nine lakh doses and even scale up to 15 lakh immunisations per day if they get adequate stock. Additional Municipal Commissioner Suresh Kakani said th BMC expect 10 per cent of state’s supply to come to Mumbai. “The city has a huge population and the demand for vaccines is high. We have asked the state to increase our supply this month. Last month’s supply was low,” he added.
In all, the Centre had provided Maharashtra 40.06 lakh doses in May. Another 25.1 lakh jabs were purchased by the state for the 18-44 age group but diverted to the 45-plus group for their second dose as a result of vaccine shortage. The private sector in Maharashtra had purchased 32.38 lakh doses in May.
Even as the Centre announced a new policy on Monday, declaring free jabs for all, Maharashtra plans to keep vaccination of the 18-44 year age group on hold in government centres. The state will continue to immunise the 45-plus group with at least one dose before opening up for the younger lot. “Data still shows those aged over 45 years are at higher risk…We want to cover a significant population in that age group first,” said a state health official.
Meanwhile, officials in the Directorate of Health Services said the government has decided to stop global procurement of vaccines. “Now that the Centre is going to provide us vaccines, we won’t be attempting to import stock,” an official added.
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