India’s Vaccination Drive: Strategies to Strengthen, Accelerate, and Successfully jab the Indian Citizens

Vaccination is the need of the hour and a priority in this pandemic. The COVID-19 has been hovering over the world for almost two years now. Considering the mounting cases with the first and second waves, vaccination has become important to ensure safety amongst citizens. India is the second-largest populated country hence; it is expected to be the largest vaccination program in the world. To immunize the citizens is a crucial step in the battle of COVID-19.

Raising Awareness to Strengthen the Vaccination Drive

The government has taken preventive measures to commence the vaccination drive in India from January 16, 2021. The two homegrown vaccines CoviShield and Covaxin have been given to Indian citizens.

With a robust plan of action, the Indian Government has recently gained momentum to vaccinate everyone “free of cost” and has successfully vaccinated more than 315 million Indian citizens. The efforts taken by the respective authorities is commendable as it continues this drive in the urban and rural sector of India. The vaccine was first given to healthcare workers, frontline workers, and people above age 60 and then followed by the others.

How is the Government implementing the Vaccination Program?

The government is under total control of this program, it has designed a user-friendly website to help citizens book vaccinations at the comfort of their homes. The process to get vaccination is made digital, where one has to book a slot to get both the dose of vaccine from https://www.cowin.gov.in/ – the official website. It provides all the guidance on various aspects of the COVID-19 vaccine administration process. There is high-level coordination and collaboration among the national, state, and district level departments involved in COVID-19 vaccination.

The Co-WIN system works to track the enlisted beneficiaries and ensures that only the pre-registered beneficiaries will be vaccinated at the nearest vaccination centre at their home. An auto-generated SMS/Email is sent before the vaccinations, beneficiaries, and supervisors regarding the session’s time, place, and date. Each beneficiary is advised to be punctual and come to their vaccination centre in the given time slot. The centres are thoroughly sanitized and follow social distancing measures to their fullest. A total of 100 people are injected in each session per day and are monitored for 30 minutes to check any effects of the vaccine. Depending on each vaccination centre, the number of people vaccinated in a given session per day is completed based on the population, centre area, and experience factor. This speeds up the vaccination drive and helps for the improvement of the second and subsequent dose.

The Current State of Pandemic Times

According to the data released by the Union Health Ministry, it has recorded 404.5 million shots across the country and it has been administered to 318.4 million people. This data represents that little over one-third of India’s eligible population. Two doses indicate the completion of being vaccinated. So, at least 25.2% of India’s adults have received one dose of the vaccine and 8.7% of Indians have received both doses.

In an official statement – the Ministry of India tweeted, “India takes another leap in the fight against #COVID19 by administering more than 40 crore vaccine doses so far under the world’s #LargestVaccineDrive!”

The Next Level to Surpass

India has a strong vaccine program, it has not only speed up its vaccination drive but also has plans to manufacture and distribute COVID-19 vaccine to countries that can’t afford it. To date, it has been the world’s largest manufacturer in the distribution of vaccines across the globe. The vaccines produced by India are among the leading products Internationally.

The COVID-19 pandemic has triggered development with leaps and bounds. The collaborations among countries experienced during these times have been immense.

According to the most recent reports, July is expected to be the greatest month for the vaccination drive in India. It is expected to touch record-breaking numbers during July as this will ensure utmost safety and protection against any new variants and ease of lockdown regulations. It has also been noticed that a third wave can be expected if the situation worsens at any point. Hence, it is necessary to take all the required measures to keep the vaccination process on track and maintain the pace for the upcoming months.

The next months between August to December are crucial for India’s vaccination program. The Central Government has informed the Parliament that a total of 135 crore doses will be made available this year.

On the other hand, it also will need to ensure that the production of these vaccines remains constant and a smooth supply of doses is maintained. The current existing manufacturers – Serum Institute of India and Bharat Biotech are also working towards meeting the increased demand. Hopefully, the entire population will soon be vaccinated.