India sees slow start to administering COVID-19 precaution dose, less than 10,000 booster shots given on Day 1

by Priya Bharti

Administering of precaution dose of COVID-19 vaccines began in India at a slow pace, as less than 10,000 people received the jabs under the programme on Sunday.

The nationwide inoculation of the precaution dose at private vaccination centers for all aged above 18 years, who have completed nine months since the administration of their second dose of COVID-19 vaccine, started on Sunday. People can take a third dose of the same vaccine as the first two doses in private hospitals.

Only a few private vaccination centers started the exercise on Day One, while most hospitals plan to start the booster plan from Monday.

As the exercise began to administer precaution doses of COVID-19 vaccines to all aged above 18 years, only 9,496 jabs were administered on Sunday, reported The Times of India citing the Co-WIN dashboard.
According to the report, the vaccine shots were given at 850 private sites across the country. However, it was not clear how many of these were giving booster doses to adults on Day One of the rollout.

In Delhi, only 481 residents aged between 18 and 60 received booster shots of COVID-19 vaccines on Day One.

The expanded inoculation drive got off to a crawling start in Mumbai as well with only 1,233 people taking the booster dose in the city on the day, according to Co-WIN estimates.
In Punjab, only 15 government hospitals started administering booster doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to the population aged above 18 years.

Ahead of the rollout of the exercise, vaccine majors Serum Institute of India (SII) and Bharat Biotech on Saturday said they have decided to cut prices of the precaution dose of their respective COVID-19 vaccines — Covishield and Covaxin — to Rs 225 per shot for private hospitals after discussions with the government.

The Centre had earlier told states and union territories that private vaccination centres can charge up to a maximum of Rs 150 per dose as a service charge over and above the vaccine cost.

(With Times Inputs)

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