Updated: January 22, 2022 7:55:23 am
The state’s average Covid vaccination coverage of children is at 45 per cent but many districts with high positivity rate are still lagging. In fact, the gradual spread of Covid virus in the rural parts is a matter of concern for public health officials as far as unvaccinated children are concerned.
In Maharashtra, out of the 60.63 lakh children in the age group of 15-18 years, 28.26 lakh of them have taken the first dose. But 44 per cent of the vaccination has been recorded in seven districts — Ahmednagar (1.51 lakh), Kolhapur (1.31 lakh), Mumbai (1.79 lakh), Nashik (1.52 lakh), Pune (2.64 lakh), Thane (2.39 lakh) and Nagpur (1.26 lakh).
Rural districts are lagging due to vaccine resistance and lack of adequate staff to expedite inoculation among children. Chandrapur has the lowest vaccine coverage with only 24 per cent of eligible children vaccinated. In Nandurbar, only 33% of the eligible children have been inoculated while in Amravati, only 42 per cent of the children have taken the first shot.
With the reopening of schools for all classes with Covid protocols in place, unvaccinated children have become the main concern of public health officials. “We have instructed all the districts to ramp up vaccination among children.
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Some districts are also holding camps in villages to inoculate children to deal with vaccine hesitancy,” said Dr Pradip Awate, state surveillance officer.
Data from the public health department shows that between January 1-20, a total of 18,798 children in the age of 0-10 years have been infected with Covid with an 8.8 per cent surge in the infection rate.
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