Over 15,800 people get COVID vaccine shots on Thursday in Delhi; turnout 62 pc

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New Delhi, Feb 11 (PTI) Over 15,800 beneficiaries received COVID-19 vaccine shots in Delhi on Thursday in the fourth week of the inoculation drive, registering a turnout of 62 per cent, according to data shared by officials.

Senior officials said the number of vaccination centres were increased to 253 on Thursday from 183 earlier.

On Wednesday, the corresponding figures were 14,743 with a turnout of about 80 per cent.

Besides healthcare workers, frontline workers, who include, police, civil defence staff, DJB and electricity department employees, among others, are also getting jabs for the last several days.

Also, the number of scheduled days, from initially four days -- Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday -- have now been extended to six days a week, Monday-Saturday.

After a sluggish start, since the exercise was kicked off on January 16, the inoculation drive had picked up pace in the last several days.

'Today, 15,807 people were administered coronavirus vaccine, and AEFI (adverse events following immunisation) was reported in 12 persons,' a senior official of the Delhi Health Department said.

The number of people vaccinated against COVID-19 till date in Delhi, majority of whom are healthcare workers, has crossed the one lakh-mark, officials had said on Saturday.

Under the nationwide mega vaccination drive launched on January 16, a total of 4,319 (53 per cent) health workers against a target of 8,117, were administered the shots at 81 centres across the city on day one.

On the second scheduled day, the figures had stood at 3,598 (44 per cent of the target). The sharp fall had come after one severe and 50 minor adverse effect cases were reported, on the opening day of the vaccination drive.

The count on third schedule day was much higher, at 4,936 (48 per cent).

Various reasons were being attributed to the low turnout in the initial days, including some technical issues and apprehensions related to adverse events.

However, the government has maintained that no case of serious/severe AEFI is attributable to vaccination till date.

Oxford COVID-19 vaccine Covishield is being administered at majority of the centres while Bharat Biotech-made Covaxin doses are being given at the remaining facilities.

The Delhi government had taken measures like counselling and formal phone calls to raise the percentage of healthcare workers turning up to get COVID-19 jabs. The district-wise distribution of total 12 AEFI cases on Thursday was -- Central Delhi (0), East Delhi (0), New Delhi (1), North Delhi (2), North East Delhi (0), North West Delhi (0), Shahdara (2), South Delhi (4), South East Delhi (0), South West Delhi (1) and West Delhi (2), according to the data shared by authorities.

With low turnout of healthcare workers in the initial days of the COVID-19 vaccination drive, Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain had recently said the exercise is voluntary and a matter of 'personal decision' for people whether to get a shot or not, but all efforts are being made to boost their confidence.

He had reiterated that this is a voluntary exercise and people are making their own decisions, as it's the initial phase. PTI KND TDS TDS