March 14, 2021 10:56:16 pm
NGOs will join the BMC in its vaccination drive to counsel slum dwellers for vaccination, provide assistance at vaccination counters and follow up post-vaccination as the civic body plans to massively scale up daily vaccination numbers.
The state has vaccinated 10.98 lakh people aged above 60 years and those aged 45-59 years with comorbidity, and covered 10 per cent of its targeted population. In Mumbai, 2.77 lakh people in this pool have received their first dose of vaccine.
Hard pressed with health workers, BMC signed an MoU with Bharatiya Jain Sangathana (BJS) to aid it in vaccination. The NGO has agreed to work pro-bono.
BJS will set up held desks in vaccination centres to address queries of people and coordinate between vaccination officials and recipients. It will also begin awareness drives in slums to encourage them to get vaccinated. The NGO will also follow up post-vaccination with recipients. It will use mobile vans to raise awareness.
The NGO has earlier worked with BMC in testing, treating and tracking high risk contacts during the past year. It was sponsored by Credai-Maharashtra Chamber of Housing Industry and Step One. “The NGO showed interest in working pro-bono for vaccination. Since we had experience with them during tracking and testing of Covid-19 patients, we signed an MoU,” said Additional Municipal Commissioner Suresh Kakani.
Currently, vaccination turnout is largely limited to middle and higher income groups. Slum turnout has been low due to poor awareness, lack of time to wait in queue and vaccine hesitancy in some pockets.
BMC has allowed nursing homes with more than 50 beds to apply as vaccination centres and for private sector to remain open 24×7. Several hospitals have extended their vaccination sessions until night to gauge response of public. But they are yet to start 24-hour vaccination facility.
Starting this week, Nair hospital, Seven Hills hospital, BKC Jumbo centre, Mulund Jumbo centre and Dahisar jumbo centre will start administering Covaxin along with Covishield doses.
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