Tribune News Service
Panchkula, January 21
“I will get vaccinated only if bound by an official order,” said a Class IV employee at the Civil Hospital in Sector 6, expressing his fear over the Covid-19 vaccine.
I didn’t get infected even when Covid was at its peak. I may have become immune. I am healthy. Why should I get inoculated? - Pvt Hospital technician
He said senior doctors had been explaining them the benefits of the vaccine, but wondered why they did not talk about the risks involved?
Similar apprehensions were shared by a technician of a city-based private hospital. “I didn’t get infected even when Covid-19 was at its peak last year. I might have developed immunity. Also, I am healthy by God’s grace. Why should I get vaccinated?” he said.
A lot of healthcare professionals in the district have expressed reluctance over taking the vaccine shot, fearing side effects.
Such concerns have caused the vaccine drive to slow down. The district has a target of vaccinating 6,200 healthcare workers in the first phase.
The achievement rate of the drive, which was launched with much aplomb, has come down to 63.42 per cent by the end of the fifth day from 94.7 per cent on the first day. Today, 136 healthcare workers received the dose against the targeted 240, taking the total number to 933.
Meanwhile, health administrators blame lower-rung staff for the reduced pace of the vaccination drive. The District Immunisation Officer, Dr Meenu Sasan, has been repeatedly saying that Class IV employees are reluctant to take the vaccine.
“Lower-rung employees have adopted a wait-and-watch attitude before getting themselves inoculated,” she said.
She told The Tribune today that they were hoping the numbers would increase significantly in the days to come.
More vaccination sites: In view of the slow rollout of the Covid vaccination drive, the Panchkula Health Department is all set to increase the number of sites in the district for sessions on Friday. The vaccine will be administered at six sites in the district, including dispensaries and private hospitals.
The Health Department hopes to vaccinate at least 1,078 healthcare workers on Friday.
As many as 6,219 – 3,541 government employees and 2,678 private professionals – are being prioritised in the first phase of the vaccination drive.
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