Only 24% of eligible beneficiaries have take precaution dose of Covid vaccine, shows data | Latest News Delhi

Only 24% of eligible beneficiaries have take precaution dose of Covid vaccine, shows data | Latest News Delhi
Written by bobby

More than nine months after the Union government rolled out the Covid-19 precaution dose, starting with healthcare and frontline workers and those above the age of 60 years on January 10 and eventually covering all citizens above the age of 18, the response to the third jab remains poor in the national capital, with 76% of eligible beneficiaries yet to be administered their dose, official data has shown.

Only 24% of the 13.3 million people in Delhi eligible for the precaution dose have come forward as on September 20, as per Covid vaccination cumulative achievement data presented in the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) meeting on Thursday

This figure is a sharp drop from those who have taken the first dose of the vaccine (112% — many from outside the national capital also took the first dose in Delhi) and second dose (96%).

Of those who have taken the precaution dose, the highest coverage is amongst healthcare workers and frontline workers (61%), followed by those above 60 years (48%), while only 19% of those in the 18-59 years age group have taken the third dose.

A Delhi government official said the low coverage in the 18-59 age group is because the administration of precaution doses for this age bracket started on April 10 — three months after healthcare and frontline workers and senior citizens became eligible for the same.

Dr Jugal Kishore, head of community medicine at Safdarjung Hospital, said: “Booster dose of Covid vaccine is less accepted due to the perception of low risk of infection and minimum mortality now. There are some studies showing no extra benefits of vaccine. The low rate of prevalence of Covid in population is also not motivating people to take booster.”

A health department official said precaution doses are free at all government facilities in the Capital. “Each day, at around 600 sites, Covid vaccines, including precaution doses, are available for all eligible for it, and around 18,000-20,000 people turn up. A large number of those turning up take the precaution doses,” said the official.

At Thursday’s DDMA meeting, experts reviewed the vaccination status and stressed on increasing the coverage of vaccination, especially precaution doses. After the DDMA meeting, chief minister Arvind Kejriwal appealed to all eligible residents to take the precaution dose.

A Delhi government official said the government is taking multiple steps to improve the coverage of the precaution dose. “Every day, vaccination sites are conducted at select railway stations, bus terminals, metro stations and other public places. The health department has written to all government and private hospitals to check the vaccination status of patients who visit their facilities and encourage them to get the due doses. The district authorities are engaging market associations and RWAs for conducting vaccination sites and encouraging people to complete their due doses,” the official said.

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