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Over 1.5 crore eligible residents in Maharashtra yet to get first dose of Covid vaccine

🔴 Maharashtra has an estimated 9.14 crore residents above 18 years of age and till now, the first dose has been administered to nearly 7.59 crore beneficiaries.

Written by Anuradha Mascarenhas | Pune |
Updated: December 7, 2021 8:31:08 am
Over 1.5 crore eligible residents in Maharashtra yet to get first dose of Covid vaccineIn Maharashtra, about 4.25 crore people have received both doses of the vaccine, which means approximately 46.49% of the eligible population in the state has been fully vaccinated. (Express Photo by Arul Horizon)

At least 1.55 crore residents of Maharashtra, who are above 18 years of age and are eligible to get the vaccine against coronavirus, are yet to receive even its first dose, according to Health Department data.

The state has an estimated 9.14 crore residents above 18 years of age and till now, the first dose has been administered to nearly 7.59 crore beneficiaries.

“This number (of unvaccinated) is high and equal to the eligible population in some of the smaller states in our country… being a large cohort, it can generate critical mass and drive the third wave of Covid-19 infections,” reads a letter by Dr Pradeep Vyas, additional chief secretary (health) Maharashtra, which has been sent to collectors, municipal commissioners, chief executive officers of Zilla Parishads and divisional commissioners.

Dr Vyas has directed district collectors to cover all eligible beneficiaries, with particular attention to Thane, Nashik, Jalgaon, Ahmednagar and Solapur districts.

In Maharashtra, about 4.25 crore people have received both doses of the vaccine, which means approximately 46.49% of the eligible population in the state has been fully vaccinated.

“In the country, more than 50% of the eligible population (18 plus age) has received the second dose of Covid Vaccine. We lag behind the national average in terms of the number of people who have received both doses of the vaccine. As on December 5, we have about 85.46 lakh people who have received the first dose of Covishield vaccine but are overdue for the second dose, and 12.66 lakh people who have received the first dose of Covaxin and are overdue for their second dose,” Dr Vyas has said in the letter.

Thane district tops the chart in terms of the number of beneficiaries in the 18+ age group who are yet to take the first dose of the vaccine. There are approximately 15 lakh beneficiaries in Thane who are yet to take the first jab, followed by Nashik, with more than 14 lakh. Over nine lakh each in Ahmednagar, Solapur, Jalgaon and Nanded are yet to be inoculated with the first dose.

In Pune district, over 12 lakh beneficiaries are now due for the second dose of Covishield vaccine. In other districts, the numbers are: 6,62,368 in Mumbai, 5,22,087 in Kolhapur, and 5,10,168 in Thane. For the second dose of Covaxin, there are 1,09,403 beneficiaries due in Gondia, 86,128 in Bhandara, 85,471 in Pune and 66,113 in Mumbai.

“Individual line listing is available in the district through the Co-Win portal and we can even get the mobile number of those concerned, who may be called through call centres and other mechanisms, and asked to come forward and take their second due dose. This concept of call centre calling those who have missed the second dose has been found to be fruitful in a couple of districts. In view of the latest variant of SARS COV-2 Omicron, it is very necessary that we complete the vaccination of the eligible population at the earliest,” said Dr Vyas.

Meanwhile, the Centre’s ‘Har Ghar Dastak’ Covid-19 inoculation campaign to increase vaccination coverage has been extended till December 31, state Vaccination Officer Dr Sachin Desai told The Indian Express. “Our healthcare workers will visit each house and encourage people to take the first dose and remind other beneficiaries to get their second shot,” said Dr Desai.

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