Dry run for Covid vaccination begins in Ludhiana

Two-day mock exercise to check preparedness for the final launch of the vaccine

Dry run for Covid vaccination begins in Ludhiana

A health worker carries a box of Covid vaccine during the launch of the dry run in Ludhiana. Himanshu Mahajan

Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 28

The dry run for the Covid vaccination got underway in the city today. The two-day mock exercise is aimed at preparing the district administration for the final launch of the mass immunisation campaign, which is likely to be undertaken any time soon.

Launching the dry run exercise at the Civil Hospital here, Deputy Commissioner (DC) Varinder Kumar Sharma clarified, “The dry run is just a mock exercise to prepare the administration for the final vaccination drive.”

“Although the whole 72-hour process, which includes time taken for preparing medicine boxes and sending SMSes to beneficiaries to invite them at vaccine centres will be followed in this dry run, the actual vaccination drive will be carried out after receiving vaccine,” the DC added.

Ludhiana, which has assumed the dubious distinction of Covid capital of Punjab with highest number of infections and fatalities, was among two districts – the other being Nawanshahr – selected by the state government for conducting the dry run for the Covid vaccination.

Accompanied by Additional Deputy Commissioner (Development) Sandeep Kumar, Civil Surgeon Rajesh Bagga and SDM (Ludhiana East) Baljinder Singh Dhillon, the DC inspected the dry run on the first day.

As per the protocol, beneficiaries were today informed through SMSes to visit vaccine centres tomorrow, which would be the second day of the mock drill. The dry run was launched simultaneously at seven locations, including Civil Hospital and Dayanand Medical College and Hospital in Ludhiana, besides one in each Raikot, Jagraon, Machhiwara, Khanna and Payal subdivisions, the DC said.

The activity was aimed at testing the laid out mechanisms for the Covid vaccination roll out in Ludhiana, the DC added. The dry run would conduct end-to-end testing of the Covid vaccination process while pre-identified beneficiaries from specified groups supported by Co-WIN, an electronic application, would be vaccinated during the drive.

The primary objective of the dry run includes assessing the operational feasibility of using Co-WIN application in the field environment and to test linkages between planning. Implementation and reporting mechanisms will identify challenges and guide way forward prior to actual implementation.

More than 30,000 healthcare workers (both government and private) of Ludhiana district, who registered themselves on the portal, would be administered the Covid vaccine in the first phase while anganwadi workers, population above 50 years of age, below 50 years with comorbidities, and others, will be covered in the subsequent phases, the DC said.

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