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Vaccination centres might be shifted to schools and colleges

The State administration has planned to shift vaccination centres from Primary Health Centres (PHCs) and government hospitals to schools and colleges in an attempt to reduce the risk of people getting infected with COVID-19 while getting vaccinated. This shift will ensure that people getting their first or second jab will not come in contact with patients visiting hospitals or ones getting themselves tested. This decision was announced by the Deputy Chief Minister and Minister for Higher Education and the Chairman of the COVID-19 task force, C.N. Ashwath Narayan at a press conference on Saturday.

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He added that there was an urgent need to increase the number of oxygenated beds in all health facilities. The allocation of oxygenated beds must be as such; 30 oxygenated beds in community health centres, 100 oxygenated beds in taluk hospitals and 100 ICU beds in district hospitals.  

As per the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC), vaccination sites must be shifted to areas such as community halls and large office complexes and an ambulance, a staff nurse, three rooms and emergency drugs would be all that is required for the same. A decision was taken to treat crematorium workers as frontline workers and provide insurance to them. Also, ₹ 10 would be provided daily for the disposal of waste generated by each COVID-19 patient.    

The COVID-19 task force has decided to suspend the practice of home isolation of COVID-19 patients in rural and urban slum areas, taking into consideration the well-being of the patient’s family members. The prerequisites for home isolation such as a separate well-ventilated room, a separate toilet, and a caregiver to take care of the patient are not available in most rural areas and urban slums. Thus, individuals who have tested positive, including asymptomatic patients will have to shift to a COVID Care Centre to prevent family members from contracting the virus.  

The Technical Advisory Committee has also decided to temporarily suspend administering the first dose of Covaxin until further stocks arrive. The jab will only be administered to those awaiting their second dose. The ₹ 2 crore global tender will be divided into 4 tenders of ₹ 50 lakh each, to procure vaccines. 

The vaccination of the age group 18-44 will resume after the State Government develops a platform similar to that of Co-WIN.

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