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Sunday, June 20, 2021

Mumbai: Vaccination, Covid testing hit by waterlogging

The daily Covid-19 testing figure also dropped as healthcare workers struggled to travel and reach containment zones for routine testing.

By: Express News Service | Mumbai |
Updated: June 9, 2021 10:36:22 pm
Waterlogged streets in Kurla kept people indoors, while the local train between Kurla and CSMT also stopped working due to flooded tracks since afternoon, hampering transport and forcing the daily turnout for immunisation to dip by 40 per cent. (File)

GOVERNMENT VACCINATION centres in waterlogged areas witnessed 40 to 50 per cent drop in turnout, and some were even forced to close immunisation for the day due to waterlogging caused by heavy rain in the city on Wednesday.

The daily Covid-19 testing figure also dropped as healthcare workers struggled to travel and reach containment zones for routine testing.

On Wednesday 50807 people were immunised, a dip by 47 percent from 96860 on Tuesday. Mumbai’s government centres vaccinated 12172 people, down from 19052 on Tuesday. Private hospitals immunised 38635 people, down from 77809 people.

In L ward, covering Kurla and Nehru Nagar, the vaccination centre was shut by 2 pm after water entered the facility. A medical team was dispatched to reach the centre and transport 14 vials of the vaccine back to the ward office for storage. “While there is a refrigerator there, we had concerns about a possible power cut. Our vaccination centres opened late today (Wednesday), by around 11 am because health workers were stuck due to waterlogging. Most reported to work despite heavy rain,” said Dr Jeetendra Jadhav, medical officer in L ward.

Waterlogged streets in Kurla kept people indoors, while the local train between Kurla and CSMT also stopped working due to flooded tracks since afternoon, hampering transport and forcing the daily turnout for immunisation to dip by 40 per cent.

Testing also suffered. Dr Jadhav said L ward conducted 5,000 RT-PCR and rapid antigen tests daily, and the figure on the day fell by 50 per cent. Out of 1,000 RT-PCR tests, only 400 could be conducted, he added.

In Andheri (West), while vaccination centres were not shut down, but several remained empty. “We allowed people to walk in today instead of booking online slots. But people could not travel from far away locations, only those living near the centres could reach,” said medical officer Dr Ajit Pampatwar.

Dr Pampatwar said his technicians and phlebologist found it difficult to travel. “We could conduct 400 to 500 tests, which is a dip by 40 per cent in daily testing,” he added.

In Byculla, Hakim vaccination centre was shut by 10.30 am when water entered the centre. In JJ hospital, also located in a low-lying area, water accumulated around hospital gates. “Our vaccination centre is on the second floor. But there is waterlogging around the hospital, people found it hard to reach the centre,” said a doctor from hospital.

Ward officials said based on rainfall prediction and local situation, they will plan which vaccination centres will be kept open on Thursday.

Hospitals moved the waiting area from tents on open grounds to hospital corridors. In Nair hospital, the area outside the college building and main gate was flooded. Its vaccination centre has a tent for recipients to wait. On Wednesday, they were asked to wait inside the hospital building. At the NESCO centre, dean Dr Neelam Andrade said they were not using the waiting area in the open ground since daily immunisations had reduced due to vaccine shortage.

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