COVID-19: Over 25,000 people vaccinated in Delhi on Wednesday till 6 pm

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New Delhi, Mar 31 (PTI) Over 25,000 beneficiaries received COVID-19 vaccine shots in the national capital by 6 pm on Wednesday, and only one of them has reported adverse events so far, officials said here.

The number of beneficiaries was less compared with other days as dispensary-based session sites are not functional on Wednesdays and Fridays, an official said.

In the age bracket of 45-59 years, 2,489 beneficiaries received vaccine shots, while 12,637 senior citizens also got their first jabs by 6 pm, an official said.

The second dose of the vaccines were given to 6,808 people, he said, adding that 1,892 frontline workers and 1,456 healthcare workers got their first shots.

A total of 25,282 people were vaccinated across the city, and only one case of minor AEFI (adverse events following immunisation) was recorded by 6 pm, the officials said.

Vaccination centres in the city have been operating from 9 am to 9 pm since March 22.

The third phase of the COVID-19 vaccination drive for 65 lakh people aged above 45 will begin on Thursday in the national capital, the officials said.

In the first phase, which began on January 16, over 3.6 lakh beneficiaries comprising healthcare workers and frontline workers were vaccinated in Delhi.

Vaccine shots were given to persons aged 60 and above and those in the 45-59 age bracket with comorbidities in the second phase.

'In the third phase, people aged 45 and above as on January 1, 2022 are eligible for vaccination, irrespective of their comorbidity status,' a senior government officer said.

Only registered beneficiaries will be given vaccine shots between 9 am and 3 pm. The unregistered ones can take the jabs from 3 pm to 9 pm. They just need to carry their Aadhaar card or any other valid identity proof, an official said.

The third phase of the COVID-19 vaccination drive is slated to span across 192 health facilities, including 136 private hospitals, in the national capital on Thursday, the officials said.

Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain said the 65 lakh eligible beneficiaries (aged above 45) will be given vaccine shots at around 500 sites.

'We have enough vaccines available. The number of eligible beneficiaries is quite large. We will make efforts to complete the inoculation as soon as possible,' he said.

Delhi reported 1,819 new coronavirus cases on Wednesday with a positivity rate of 2.71 per cent, while 11 more people succumbed to the pathogen, the Health Department said.

The number of cumulative cases stands at 6,62,430 in the city, and over 6.42 lakh patients have recovered from the virus so far.

The city had recorded 992 cases on Tuesday, 1,904 cases on Monday, 1,881 cases on Sunday, 1,558 cases on Saturday, 1,534 cases on Friday, 1,515 cases on Thursday, 1,254 cases on Wednesday and 1,101 cases on Tuesday.

The positivity rate was 2.70 per cent on Tuesday, 2.77 per cent on Monday, 2.35 per cent on Sunday, 1.70 per cent on Saturday, 1.80 per cent on Friday, and 1.69 per cent on Thursday.

Health experts and doctors have attributed this 'sudden rise' in cases to people becoming complacent, not following COVID-appropriate behaviour and 'assuming all is well now'.

The next two-three months could be challenging, they said, adding the situation can be kept under control if vaccination is opened up for more people and COVID-19 protocols are strictly adhered to. PTI GVS IJT IJT