Shortage of vaccine a cause for concern

Spurt in cases and deaths has also added to residents’ worry

Shortage of vaccine a cause for concern

Manmeet Singh Gill

Tribune News Service

Amritsar, May 5

A complete chaos was witnessed at the Jallianwala Bagh Martyrs’ Memorial Civil Hospital, which is the Covid-19 vaccination centre, as people exhibited complete disregard for the safety protocol and jostled with each other for their turn.

The shortage of vaccines in the district coupled with a spurt in the cases and deaths has panicked residents. As a result, the number of people turning up at vaccination centres has swelled. Contrary to the high demand for vaccines, the supply has shrunk.

The daily vaccination count which had reached around 9,500 doses daily has now gone down below 3,000 doses due to the shortage. The state government had also expressed its inability to start vaccination for 18 to 44 year age group due to shortage of vaccines.

“People are panicking after the recent increase in cases and deaths. Now, everyone wants the injection immediately. On the other hand, the supply is slow at all places,” said a doctor at the hospital.

An elderly, who arrived at the hospital for his second dose, said: “I came yesterday, too, but the supply had finished by the time my turn came. Today, I have come early.” He complained that many among those who have come for the vaccination were not even wearing masks. “What will vaccination do if we are not even ready to take precautions?” he asked.

Insiders say the stock at the hospital finished yesterday even as many people were waiting in queue. The hospital resumed vaccination after getting the fresh supply in the morning. “The present supply is enough only for two-and-a-half days. The situation has created an atmosphere of uncertainty,” he said.

The shortage of injections is also hitting those visiting private hospitals for the jab. The Health Department officials said the district gets its quota from the state government. They said the supply is limited as the state government is not getting enough vaccines from the Centre. 

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