Kohima, Jan 14 (PTI) Nagaland on Thursday received its first consignment of 26,500 doses of COVID-19 vaccine, an official said.
The vials arrived from Delhi at Dimapur Airport in an aircraft, he said.
'We have received the first batch; 50 per cent is required for the first phase of the vaccination drive, which will be launched on January 16,' Principal Director of Health Department, Vizolie Suokhrie, told reporters here.
Nagaland will join the nation in the official launch of the vaccination programme on January 16 in the presence of Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio, which will be held right after Prime Minister Narendra Modi kicks off the campaign in Delhi at 9 am, he said.
Suokhrie said it will be carried out in four phases in the state the first two being free of cost starting with 19,690 health workers in both government and private sectors.
In the second phase, around 30,000 frontline workers, including police, administration and sanitation personnel, would be inoculated, the official said.
People aged above 50 years, numbering around 3,49,757 as per the electoral rolls, will receive the vaccine in the third phase.
Allaying fears and misconceptions about the side effects of the vaccine, Suokhrie said only mild reactions such as body pain and fever might occur.
'It is not easy to develop a vaccine, and without fully asserting the efficacy, it would not have been used on humans. All vaccines are safe,' he asserted.
The first two phases of vaccination would be carried out in 1,206 immunisation sites, including district hospitals, primary health centres and community health facilities across the state.
For the third and fourth phases, school buildings and community halls would be utilised, he added. PTI NBS SBN RBT RBT