Bhubaneswar/New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the pan India rollout of COVID-19 vaccination drive on Saturday at 10:30 AM via video conferencing.
Addressing the nation, Modi said that today, many of those scientists, who are involved in vaccine research, deserve special praise, who had been involved in making the vaccine against Coronavirus for the past several months.
It usually takes years to make a vaccine. But in such a short time, not one, two Made in India vaccines are ready.
The Prime Minister further said that it is very important to have two doses of Covid-19 vaccine.
Between the first and second doses, a gap of about one month will also be maintained. The body will develop the necessary strength against Covid-19 only two weeks after the second dose.
“I request you not to make the mistake of taking off the mask and not maintaining social distancing after getting the first dose because immunity develops after the second dose,” he added.
Never before has this large-scale vaccination campaign been run in history. There are more than 100 countries in the world whose population is less than 30 million. And India is vaccinating 3 crore people in its first phase of vaccination, said the Prime Minister.
“Only India, China and America are vaccinating so many people. Phase 2 will cover 30 crore Indians. In the second phase, we have to take it to the number of 30 crores. Those who are elderly, who are suffering from serious illness, will get vaccinated at this stage,” he added.
“India’s medical system & our scientists have a lot of credibility throughout the world. We have gained this trust because of our track record. Our fight with Covid-19 has been about self-confidence and Aatma Nirbharta. To fight this difficult battle, we never gave up our belief and confidence,” said Modi.
Asserting that India has around 2300 testing labs across the nation and the country is self reliant for masks and PPE kits now, Modi said, “When both our scientists & experts were convinced about the safety and effectiveness of the Made In India vaccines, only then they grated emergency use.”
Remembering the frontline workers, the Prime Minister said, “At the time of crisis, in the atmosphere of despair, our Frontline workers were transmitting hope & giving their lives to save our nation. Our doctors, nurses, paramedical staffs, ambulance drivers, asha workers, sweepers, police and other frontline workers risked their lives for the nation.”
He further said that India’s vaccines are built on technology that is tried and tested in India. These vaccines adapt to Indian conditions. They will give India a decisive victory in the fight against coronavirus. Indian vaccines are much cheaper than foreign vaccines but are equally good. There are some vaccines abroad, whose single dose cost up to ₹5,000 & have to be kept in freeze at -70 degree temperature.
Considered to be the world’s largest vaccination program covering the entire length and breadth of the country, a total of 3006 session sites across all States and UTs were virtually connected during the launch. Around 100 beneficiaries will be vaccinated at each session site on the inaugural day.
This vaccination programme is based on the principles of priority groups to be vaccinated and Health Care workers, both in government and private sectors including ICDS workers, will receive the vaccine during this phase.
The vaccination programme uses Co-WIN, an online digital platform developed by Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, which facilitates real time information of vaccine stocks, storage temperature and individualized tracking of beneficiaries for COVID-19 vaccine.
This digital platform will assist programme managers across all levels while conducting vaccination sessions. A dedicated 24×7 call centre – 1075 – has also been established for addressing the queries related to COVID-19 pandemic, vaccine rollout and the Co-WIN software.
Adequate doses of both COVISHIELD and COVAXIN have already been delivered across the country to all States/UTs with the active support of the Ministry of Civil Aviation. These have been further delivered by the State/UT governments to the districts. All preparations are in place to initiate the programme on the principles of Jan Bhagidari.