Himachal plans first jab to all by July-end

First dose administered to around 33 lakh people I 5 lakh have got both shots

Himachal plans first jab to all by July-end

People flout social-distancing norm at a Covid vaccine centre.

Tribune News Service

Shimla, July 1

Himachal has set sights on vaccinating its entire eligible population with the first dose by July-end.

“The entire 18-plus population is around 55 lakh. Depending on the availability of vaccine, we should be able to administer everyone with the first dose by July-end,” said Secretary, Health, Amitabh Awasthy on National Doctors’ Day.

The state has administered the first dose to around 33 lakh people and a little over five lakh have received both shots. Overall, over 38 lakh doses have been administered.

Besides, Awasthy hoped that all 28 allotted PSA oxygen plants would be ready before the anticipated third wave in the state. “Eight PSA plants are already functional and we are trying to make the remaining functional before August 15,” he said. The state is unlikely to face oxygen shortage. He said with the active cases hovering around 1,600 now, the pandemic is in control to a large extent.

Dr Mallay Sarkar, a member of the state Covid committee, said there was no scope for complacency even if the situation seemed under control. Stressing the need to continue Covid-appropriate behaviour, Dr Sarkar said there was need to conduct a gap analysis for manpower, beds and oxygen and address the shortcomings immediately to stay prepared. “Also, there’s need to create community Covid care centres at gram panchayat level to ensure preparedness in the rural areas,” he said.

Docs role lauded

On National Doctors’ Day, Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur showered praises on doctors for their role in handling the pandemic. “You will tell this to the coming generations with pride that you were there in PPE kits, fighting the pandemic. Your work will be remembered for generations,” he said. The doctors worked day in and day out to treat the patients, without bothering about their own lives.

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