Union Minister Prakash Javadekar in a press briefing on Tuesday said the government had decided to open the vaccination drive to all citizens above 45 years of age starting April 1. The development comes amid rising Covid-19 cases in some regions, resulting in partial lockdowns or restrictions.
Here is all you need to know on this new vaccination announcement:
1.) All Above 45 Can Get Vaccinated: Govt | From April 1, all people above 45 years of age are entitled to get the coronavirus vaccine, Javadekar said on Tuesday. Briefing reporters on the decisions taken by the Union Cabinet, he said even people without comorbidity and above the age of 45 years, can get vaccinated. He requested people entitled to get themselves registered to take the Covid-19 shot.
2.) Vaccination Drive, Till Now | The countrywide vaccination drive was rolled out on January 16 with healthcare workers getting inoculated and vaccination of the frontline workers started from February 2. The next phase of the inoculation drive commenced on March 1 for those who are over 60 years of age and for people aged 45 and above with specified co-morbid conditions.
3.) How to Register on Co-Win | Citizens can register to get vaccinated through the Co-WIN portal by registering through their phone numbers, after which an OTP is sent to their phone for first step verification. Read full guide here.
4.) Other Registration Details | Citizens cannot choose which vaccine they will get via the Co-WIN portal. They can choose the date and COVID-19 vaccine centre. Additionally, people aged above 45 years will have to upload a medical certificate mentioning their co-morbid conditions.
5.) Private and Govt Options | Many private hospitals have also received certification to act as COVID-19 vaccine centres where they cannot charge more than Rs 250 per shot. COVID-19 vaccines are free of cost in government hospitals.
6.) Walk-in Option | Citizens who are not tech-savvy or do not own a smartphone can call the centre number — 1507. They can also walk-in to the nearest centre and if there's a vacancy.
7.) Vaccine Options | The government has authorised Serum Institute of India’s Covishield vaccine – made by Oxford and AstraZeneca; and Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin vaccine for the inoculation drive.
8.) 2nd Dose | The government on Monday announced that the time interval for administering the second dose of the Covishield vaccine should be increased from the previous 4-6 weeks to 6-8 weeks. The government said the vaccine's protection was enhanced if the second dose is administered between 6-8 weeks. For Covaxin, the second dose gap is 28 days.
9.) Cases on an Uptick | Maharashtra, Punjab, Karnataka, Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh are reporting a surge in the COVID-19 daily cases and account for 80.5 per cent of the total new cases registered, the Union Health Ministry said on Monday. India saw 46,951 new cases being registeredin a day, the highest single day rise so far this year. Maharashtra has reported the highest daily new cases at 30,535 (65.03 per cent). This is followed by Punjab with 2,644 while Kerala reported 1,875 new cases.
10.) From Janata Curfew a Year Ago, Not Much Changed | On March 22, 2020, India observed a 14-hour janta curfew with the coronavirus setting off alarm bells across the country. It was an indication of things to follow. Two days later, an unprecedented lockdown was announced. One the one-year anniversary of janta curfew, CNN News 18 did a reality check on Sarojini Nagar Market, one of the most-crowded marketplaces in Delhi. Click here for the full report.