Bihar Health Dept Left Red-faced after Bus Carrying 9 Lakh Covishield Doses Breaks Down Outside Patna Airport

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Amid the exponential rise coronavirus cases across the country and the simultaneous exhausting of the vaccine stocks, embarrassing scenes unfolded outside the Patna airport in Bihar where a bus carrying nearly 3 lakh Covishield vaccine doses failed to start. The vaccine doses were to be taken to storage centre at the Nalanda Medical College Hospital in the bus which broke down outside the airport. The “Vaccine Express”, special service dedicated to ferry coronavirus vaccine doses, was carrying close to nine lakh doses, officials were quoted as saying. But unfortunately, the bus failed to start as the battery had died down, causing embarrassment to health department officials.

The vehicle chugged back to life after the bystanders around the place were requested to push the van carrying 89,689 vials. “Each vial contains 10 doses. We will be taking it to the storage centre at NMCH,” Mukesh Kumar, a pharmacist accompanying the consignment, was quoted as saying.

The country is faced with coronavirus crisis as cases are rising at an exponential rate despite the mammoth vaccination drive. Over the past few days, India has reported over one lakh coronavirus cases every day, compelling state governments to make repeated requests for mass inoculation across age groups. Rajasthan chief minister Ahok Gehlot on Friday wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to provide the state with at least 30 lakh doses as the stocks in Rajasthan would last not more than two days.

Several vaccination centres across Mumbai, including a jumbo COVID-19 facility in business district BKC, suspended inoculation on Friday morning due to a shortage of doses, BMC sources said. The remaining centres are likely to suspend the vaccination drive by afternoon or evening as the available stock is fast depleting, according to the sources.

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