No doses, many Panjab centres shut

State expects 2 lakh vials to arrive today

No doses, many Panjab centres shut

The available stock was to be utilised for the second dose of vaccination only.

Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, May 3

Chaos was witnessed at Covid vaccination centres across Punjab today as a large number of people were turned away because of non-availability of the vaccine.

Vaccination centres in Bathinda were closed down as the stock had exhausted. Similar situation prevailed in Patiala, Sangrur, Barnala Faridkot, Jalandhar, Amritsar and other places.

Bathinda district health officials directed NGOs and others to cancel all vaccination camps till further orders. The Civil Surgeon ordered that the first dose of vaccine should not be administered to anyone till the new stock arrived. The available stock was to be utilised for the second dose of vaccination only.

Patiala health officials also had to ask the beneficiaries “to go back” after the vaccine stock exhausted on Monday afternoon. Sources in the Health Department said they didn’t have even a single dose left with them, so no vaccination camp would be held in the district on Tuesday.

Patiala Civil Surgeon Dr Satinder Singh said only around 800 beneficiaries could be administered the shots on Monday. In Sangrur, only 190 doses of Covid vaccine were left in the stock, so the vaccination drive had to be stopped. In Jalandhar, the Health Department had to recall Covishield vaccine from private centres to keep its vaccine drive running. Until Saturday, 100 to 150 centres were administering Covid vaccine in Jalandhar, but the number has now come down to only a few.

The vaccination drive has been suspended indefinitely in Ropar district. Health officials said they had only around 700 doses of vaccine this morning. The stock exhausted within a few hours, so they had no option but to return jab-seekers.

Gurdaspur, Amritsar and Pathankot districts also faced acute shortage of vaccine.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Amarinder Singh today ordered that 70 per cent of the doses be reserved for individuals with co-morbidities and the remaining for the high-risk category of employees and workers in the 45-plus age group. The state expects to receive two lakh vaccine doses for the 45-plus category tomorrow morning.

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