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UP govt says cold chains and storage of vaccines not an issue, thanks to immunisation drives

In most of the places, the storage centres are located at health institutions so that they have 24 hours dedicated electricity lines along with the availability of generators.

Written by Avaneesh Mishra | Lucknow |
January 2, 2021 8:08:53 am
Preparations to store vaccines started last month. (Express Photo/File)

With Covid vaccine candidates requiring to be stored in low temperature – some as cold as 20 degrees Celsius – the state health officials said maintaining cold chains for storing the vaccines would not pose a problem as most of the vaccines used in the government’s Routine Immunization (RI) programmes also require to be stored between 2 deg C to 8 deg C. Only, they need to increase the number of storage facilities in the coming days, they added.

According to a senior Health Department official, in most of the places, the storage centres are located at health institutions so that they have 24 hours dedicated electricity lines along with the availability of generators.

Also, the state health department has asked the government to purchase 19 generators for places dedicated power supply.

“Maintaining the cold chains is not a new thing as the Routine Immunization (RI) programmes keep running in the state. The Health Department has just increased the storage space required,” the official said.

Earlier, the UP government had said that the Centre was providing them with ice-lined refrigerators and deep freezers and the state has achieved the required storage capacity of 2.5 lakh litres from 80,000 litres in the beginning of December.

Also, the Health Department has sanctioned procurement of 4.5 crore syringes for the vaccination drive, and another 1.5 crore will be procured at a later date.

The Health Department is also ensuring the availability of Adverse Event Following Immunization (AEFI) kits that are used to deal with possible side-effects after vaccination. These kits are of different categories, related to vaccine product-related reaction, vaccine quality defect-related reaction, immunization error related reaction, immunization anxiety-related reaction, or for coincidental events.

Police prepare plan to secure storage facilities

Lucknow: With the health authorities apprehending a sense of panic and urgency among people for the Covid vaccination, the police said they are geared to secure the vaccine storage rooms as well as provide safety during the transportation of the vials.

Police are fully equipped and prepared to provide proper security at every stage, including the storage, transportation and during the vaccination drives, Director General of Police (DGP) Hitesh Chandra Awasthy has told The Indian Express.

“The Health Department has to identify places where they would store the vaccines. Security forces will be deployed as per the vaccines plans provided by the Health Department. They will be needed to guard the storage centres, and also during the transportation. As things would get fine-tuned, we will take security measures accordingly,” the DGP said. — ENS

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