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Due to gradual increase in availability of vaccines, all adults can be vaccinated by December-end: NK Arora

Arora said there has been a gradual increase in the availability of vaccines, and more are expected over the coming months.

Expressing confidence in the government’s target of vaccinating all adults by December end, Dr NK Arora, Head of National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration on Thursday said all adults will be vaccinated by December.

In an interview with the NDTV, Arora said there has been a gradual increase in the availability of vaccines, and more are expected over the coming months. But states also have to increase the number of vaccine administration centres to achieve the target, he said.

Explaining the graph, he said, “In June and July, there has been an increase. The country got 5.6 crore doses a month till May, now it is getting 10 to 12 crore doses and next month it should be nearing 16 to 18 crores. From September, we should be having 30 crore plus doses”.

But setting up the vaccination centres will be the biggest challenge as the acquisition of vaccines for states.

The target is to set 75 to 100 thousand government immunisation centres across the country but states are currently running short of vaccines and need to step up as the supply increases, he said.

Over the last three days, the country recorded an increase in the number of Covid-19 infections after a respite of 56 days. The spike has been recorded in Union Territories and states. As of July 8, eight to 11 states and UTs registered a rise.

On the other hand, there has been a drop in vaccination rates, increasing the daily average is required to meet the December target.

Over the last 7 days, there has been an average shortfall of 4.7 million Covid doses. In order to stop the third wave, the government need to push up the required vaccination rate to 8.7 million jabs a day.

India had expanded its Covid-19 vaccination drive by allowing its large 18-plus population to get inoculated from May 1. Under the Centre’s new vaccination policy for the third phase of inoculation that started from May 1, states and private hospitals have the onus of procuring shots from the manufacturers for those in the age group of 18-44.

Currently, there are two vaccines being used to inoculate people in India, the Bharat Biotech’ Covaxin, and the Oxford-Astrazeneca’s Covishield which has been produced and marketed by Serum Institute of India. Russia’s Sputnik V availability, and other internationally approved vaccines are rumoured to be publicly made available as well.

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