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Precautionary Covid dose for all adults from Sunday: Which vaccine will be administered, how to book appointment?

The health ministry on Friday announced the rollout of the precautionary third dose of the Covid-19 vaccine for the 18-plus population at private vaccination centres from April 10.

Written by Kaunain Sheriff M , Edited by Explained Desk | New Dehi |
Updated: April 9, 2022 1:06:58 pm
The health ministry has said that all those who are more than 18 years of age and have completed nine months or 39 weeks after receiving the second dose of the vaccine would be eligible for precautionary third dose. (File Photo)

The health ministry on Friday announced the rollout of the precautionary third dose of the Covid-19 vaccine for the 18-plus population at private vaccination centres from April 10.

When can you get the precautionary dose?

The health ministry has said that all those who are more than 18 years of age and have completed nine months or 39 weeks after receiving the second dose of the vaccine would be eligible for precautionary third dose.

Is it available free of cost?

No. The precautionary dose for the 18-plus population will be available at private vaccination centres. Therefore, the person who receives the dose will have to pay for it. Private centres will soon announce the price of the precautionary dose and the same will be reflected on the CoWin platform. The health ministry has, however, said that private vaccination centres can charge up to a maximum of Rs 150  per dose as service charge over and above the cost of the vaccines.

Who all are eligible for precautionary doses free of cost?

The priority groups — healthcare workers, frontline workers, and people above 60 years of age — are eligible to get the third dose, free of cost, at government vaccination centres.

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Will I know about the availability of the third dose?

Yes. The health ministry has made it mandatory for the private vaccination centres to provide details about the available stock on CoWin. They will also have to declare the price per dose.

Which vaccine will be administered for the precautionary dose?

India will continue to follow homologous vaccination for booster schedules. “Administration of precaution dose will be homologous i.e. same vaccine type will be used for precaution dose which was used for vaccination of 1st and 2nd dose,” the health ministry has said.

This means that a beneficiary who has received two doses of Covishield will have to take Covishield as the third dose. Similarly, those who received two doses of Covaxin will have to take Covaxin as the precautionary dose.

Will I know when I am eligible for the third dose?

Yes. The health ministry has citizens eligible for the third dose will receive SMS based on the details of earlier vaccinations recorded on CoWin.

Can a beneficiary walk into a vaccination centre without prior appointment?

Yes, appointments can be booked both online and offline. Beneficiaries can book an appointment for a precautionary dose at private vaccination centres.

“Eligible citizens can avail walk-in vaccination, wherein PCVCs can add beneficiaries onsite to an ongoing vaccination session for precaution dose,” the health ministry guidelines state. For this, the private centre can locate the existing vaccination record of the beneficiary by searching through the mobile number, beneficiary reference ID or the details of ID card used at the time of earlier doses, the guidelines state.

Will a new vaccination certificate be issued for the third dose?

Yes. The beneficiary will receive a confirmation SMS through CoWin platform after receiving the third dose. After this, the vaccinator will have to check whether the beneficiary has received the SMS. The vaccinator will then generate the certificate.

Beneficiaries can also download the certificate by logging in to the CoWin platform or through DigiLocker or Aarogya Setu apps.

How many precautionary doses have been administered in India, so far?

A total of 45.15 lakh health care workers, 69.77 lakh frontline workers, and 1.25 crore people above the age of 60 years have received the precautionary dose.

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