Dry run for COVID-19 vaccination conducted across India

World Saturday 02/January/2021 16:48 PM
Dry run for COVID-19 vaccination conducted across India

Guwahati: A dry run for COVID-19 vaccine administration is being conducted on Saturday across all states and Union Territories of India.

This is the second round of dry run 'drill' after the same was conducted in the states of Andhra Pradesh, Punjab, Gujarat and Assam between December 23-29, 2020. The dry run vaccination programme is being conducted at the Gauhati Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) in Guwahati.

"We are doing a dry run where we have well-formulated every step right from the beneficiary list, bringing the vaccines in the proper way, how it is going to be stored and then how we are going to cross-check each beneficiary, how much time we are going to take in the entire process," Dr Sthapna Sharma, Assistant professor at GMCH said.

The same process is being followed at Gandhi Shatabdi Hospital (GSH), Dehradun.

"Dry run is going on at five places in Dehradun. We have put 25 beneficiaries at one centre," Gopal Ram Beniwal, Sub-Divisional Magistrate of Sadar Tehsil said.

The drill is being conducted at four more locations other than GSH in the capital Dehradun - Bhaniawala, Raipur, Ranipokhari and Khurbura.

"We were kept waiting in a room after getting vaccinated. They asked us whether we feel any uneasiness. They also directed us to use masks and wash our hands properly," said Anil Kumar Tamta who was vaccinated in the dry run process.

The beneficiaries were messaged a day before regarding the timings of the vaccination process. Police checked their identity proofs and they were then taken for the vaccination.

Medical professionals are checking the blood pressure and sugar levels of the beneficiaries who were then given injections and put under observation.

All 30 districts of Odisha have also undergone a vaccine dry run in 31 different sites.

Dr LD Sahoo, Director of Capital Hospital in Bhubaneswar informed that 25 people, all frontline workers, have been registered for the mock drill here.

"We will mimic the procedure of giving the vaccine shot. After that, the person will be kept in an observation room so that we can know if there is any immediate side-effect," said Sahoo.

"The arrangement in the office is good for the dry run," said Susmita Jena, a participant for the dry run.

Andhra Pradesh, too, conducted the mock drill in all 13 districts of the state. Officials had selected three locations in each district for the dry run. Eluru district, Asram medical college and Gopannapalem PHC of West Godavari district organised the dry run for the COVID-19 administration.

The exercise has already been carried out in the Krishna district on December 28, when the Union government selected four states for the dry run. Three centres are selected in this district for conducting the dry run.

Dry runs are being monitored by District Medical and Health Officer M Suhasini and Machilipatnam Revenue Divisional Officer (RDO) Khaja Vali here.

The vaccination drill was also carried out in Kerala as well. The state Health Minister KK Shailaja reviewed the dry run for COVID-19 at a government hospital in Thiruvananthapuram. "The mock drill is over here. Everything went smoothly. The exercise is being conducted in 4 districts," Shailaja said.

According to Union Health Ministry, the objective of the dry run for COVID-19 vaccine introduction is to "assess operational feasibility in the use of COVID Vaccine Intelligence Network (Co-WIN) application in the field environment, to test the linkages between planning and implementation and to identify the challenges and guide the way forward prior to actual implementation". This is also expected to give confidence to program managers at various levels, it said.

The activity is proposed to be conducted in all state capitals in at least three session sites. Some states will also include districts that are situated in difficult terrain or have poor logistical support. Maharashtra and Kerala are likely to schedule the dry run in major cities other than their capital.

Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan had on Friday chaired a high-level meeting to review preparedness at session sites across the country for the COVID-19 vaccination trial run on Saturday and said just like preparations during elections, each member of medical teams should be trained responsibly.

The minister urged every official to ensure that the vaccination sites and officials in-charge abide by the detailed checklist and Standard Operating Protocols for vaccination that has been prepared by the Union Health Ministry.