Kerala has hit a Covaxin wall which is now threatening the Covid-19 inoculation drive especially for those above 45 years of age who are still to get the second dose.
The state’s initial plan had been to push ahead with vaccination. However, the drive, which had got off to a great start, was derailed in no time when the vaccine supply from the Centre began dwindling.
According to a report by The Hindu, with the Centre announcing that it would no longer be supplying vaccines for inoculating the 18-44 age group and that states had to fend for themselves, Kerala stopped the supply of vaccines to private hospitals since May 1 and the campaign is now restricted to a handful of government hospitals.
Following the chaotic scenes at vaccination centres, the state has stopped spot registration. But the vaccination slots available online are so limited that these get booked in no time.
Studies that indicate that a single dose of vaccine offers very low protection against the virus variant B.1.617.1, the dominant strain in circulation in the State, has raised an alarm that a chunk of the elderly are remaining vulnerable to infection.
Interestingly a separate report by Times of India, said the country administered about 2.1 crore Covaxin doses till Thursday morning, official data shows. However, more than 6 crore doses should have been in circulation, keeping in mind export.
This creates a deficit of at least 4 crore doses. This comes at a time when the country is facing an acute shortage of jabs and states are running out of vaccines every other day.
Meanwhile, a report by The News Minute said On May 26, out of the 562 Covid-19 Vaccine Centres across Kerala, 508 centres administered the Covishied vaccines and 54 centres gave Covaxin doses. According to the Kerala government’s vaccination bulletin issued on May 26, the state had a vaccine stock of only 47,750 doses of Covaxin and 1.62 lakh doses of Covishield, which were freely supplied by the Union Government to vaccinate the population above 45 years, health care workers and frontline workers.