On March 23, 2021, the Indian Union Minister Prakash Javadekar addressed the nation regarding the upcoming vaccination drive which will be initiated on April 01. Currently, this vaccination drive is limited to people aged 45+ years with multiple health conditions.
The Union Minister of India has stated that citizens over 45 years of age will be given the dose of COVID-19 vaccine from April 01. Javadekar had further requested the eligible candidates to go through the registration procedure and get the jab of COVID-19 vaccine instantly. “We have plenty of vaccines. The eligible candidates must do the registration as it is a shelter against the coronavirus. All candidates above 45 years must be inoculated.” added Javadekar. The Indian Union Minister also promised that there is no scarcity of COVID-19 vaccine shots in the country.
This vaccination drive is restricted to citizens aged over 60+ and 45+ with multiple health conditions to get doses of COVID-19 vaccine. This revised eligibility criteria for the forthcoming phase of vaccination drive will also include the candidates aging over 45 years without any other health conditions. Owing to the increasing incidences of COVID-19 virus, several state governments of India have urged the Central Authority to extend the reach of this vaccination drive.
While addressing the press, Minister Javadekar claimed that Covishield vaccine’s second shot can be jabbed 8 weeks after the first shot. Moreover, the World Health Organization (WHO) has suggested the Indian health authorities to widen the gap between the doses of Covishield vaccine from eight weeks to twelve weeks as the longer intervals between doses have proven to enhance the efficacy of the vaccines.
To date, around 40 million people have been jabbed with first dose of vaccine in India with another 8 million people have been given second doses of vaccine.