Pregnant women, elderly to be given COVID-19 vaccine on priority: Odisha CM

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Bhubaneswar, Nov 18 (PTI) Exuding hope that COVID-19 vaccine would be available soon, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Wednesday said pregnant women and people above 60 years, along with health workers, would be given priority for inoculation.

Patnaik, while reviewing the coronavirus situation in the state, said the possibility of getting a vaccine now looks bright as several trials have reached final stages.

Insisting that the database of vulnerable people would come in handy as and when the vaccine is available, he said, 'Along with health workers, priority will be accorded to pregnant women and those above 60 years.' A database, if created for the purpose, will smoothen the vaccination programme, Patnaik said.

As of now people should wear face masks, follow hand hygiene and maintain social distance to prevent the transmission of the viral disease, he said.

Pointing out that the US, some European countries and New Delhi are experiencing a second wave of the pandemic, the CM advised the people to be careful in the winters.

Patnaik also asked Chief Secretary Asit Tripathy to devise a strategy for smooth conduct of examination for students of classes 10 and 12.

Tripathy apprised the chief minister of the measures being taken for curbing the spread of COVID-19 in the winter season, while ensuring livelihood for all.

Patnaik also asked the state administration to keep a watch on the steps taken by other states for avoiding a possible second wave.

Additional chief secretary, health department, PK Mohapatra, said at the meeting that the recovery rate in Odisha has reached 97 per cent while the number of cured crossed the three-lakh mark. PTI AAM RMS RMS