At the current rate of inoculation, India could take 8 months to provide first dose to all adults in the country, which is well past the Centre’s target of providing both doses by December 2021.
According to a report by The Hindu, about 16.7 crore first doses have been administered as of Monday. The Centre expects to inoculate 94.4 crore adults, according to a note last week by R.S. Sharma, Chairman of the technical committee that oversees the CoWin portal. Several Cabinet Ministers and policy advisors, spearheading India’s COVID vaccination campaign, have claimed that India will inoculate “all eligible” by December.
Last week, India administered 30 lakh doses a day on consecutive days — after over 45 days when less than 20 lakh doses were given per day. Assuming that pace were to continue, it would take 256 days, or over eight months, to complete the targeted adults, said the report.
Making a strong case for accelerating the pace of vaccination against COVID-19, Chief Economic Advisor K V
Subramanian on Monday said it was important not only for the health of people but also for the economy.
There has been increase in vaccine doses but there is a need to enhance the pace of coverage for the population, he said.
“Pace of vaccination picking up is extremely important because it will help in lowering the likelihood of another COVID-19 wave and thereby also positively enable the economic recovery,” he said while briefing the media on the GDP numbers for the financial year ended March 2021.
The health ministry has already talked about procurement of vaccines and accelerating the pace of vaccination programme, he added.
The health ministry on Sunday said nearly 12 crore doses of coronavirus vaccine will be available in June as against 7.94 crore doses in May.
The allocation of supplies to states and union territories is decided on the consumption pattern, population and vaccine wastage, the ministry said.
As per the ”Liberalised Pricing and Accelerated National Covid-19 Vaccination Strategy”, 50 per cent of the available vaccine doses are supplied to the states and UTs free of cost from the central government.
The remaining 50 per cent of vaccine doses are available for direct procurement from the vaccine manufacturers by states and UTs as well as private hospitals.