Over Rs 120 crore operational cost for COVID vaccination drive given to states & UTs: Govt

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New Delhi, Feb 5 (PTI) During the initial phases, the COVID-19 vaccine is being provided to healthcare workers and frontline workers for which, apart from free of cost supply of vaccines, the operational cost of Rs 123.49 crore has been released to the states and UTs, Minister of State for Health, Ashwini Choubey informed the Lok Sabha on Friday.

The minister further said no time limit has been set for completion of the COVID-19 vaccination drive in any state or UT presently.

The immunization drive against the novel coronavirus was rolled out from January 16 across the country.

The distribution of vaccines to states and UTs is being done as per the beneficiaries' data load registered on the CO-WIN portal, Choubey said in a written reply.

The existing infrastructure under the Universal Immunization Programme (UIP) is being utilized and is simultaneously strengthened for smooth movement of COVID-19 vaccines in the country.

On whether any case of reaction/problem among persons who have been administered the vaccine has been reported so far in the country, Choubey said a total of 7,580 Adverse Events Following Immunization (AEFIs) have been reported so far. After vaccination, beneficiaries are advised to wait for 30 minutes at the session site for observation. The vaccination sessions site is also provided with medicine and staff manning the session site are trained to manage any AEFIs. If required, cases are referred to AEFI management centres which are usually government health facilities, for further management, he said.

On whether any other countries have finalized to import Indian COVID-19 vaccine, Choubey said some countries i.e. Bangladesh, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Myanmar, Nepal, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Maldives, Oman, Bahrain, Mauritius, Seychelles, Brazil, South Africa and Mongolia have finalized to import Indian COVID-19 vaccines, so far. PTI PLB RDM RDM