Thursday, March 23, 2023

Delhi government tells Delhi HC that it has ordered Covid vaccination centres to administer Covaxin only to second-dose beneficiaries in 18-44 age group

The court said, the Delhi Government shall prioritise the persons who have received their first dose of Covaxin.

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The Delhi Government on Monday has informed the Delhi High Court that it has issued a notification directing all COVID vaccination centres shall vaccinate only those people (of age group 18-44 years) who are eligible to receive their second dose of Covaxin in June.

A Single Judge Bench comprising of Justice Rekha Palli continued hearing a plea which prayed for directions to the Delhi government for ensuring that all the beneficiaries of the first dose of Covaxin in the month of May shall get their second dose before the prescribed time limit expires.

During the hearing the court took notice of the notification dated 06.06.2021 which inter-alia, states that; “…the undersigned, in his capacity as Chairperson, State Executive Committee, DDMA, GNCTD, in exercise of powers conferred under section 22 of the Disaster Management Act, 2005, hereby directs that all Private Hospitals and Nursing Homes functioning as COVID Vaccination Centres (CVCs) for Covaxin shall ensure that the Covaxin shall be used for vaccination to only those people (of age group 18-44 years) who are eligible for receiving second dose of vaccination during the month of June, 2021 or till further orders, whichever is earlier.”

The court observed that this was a positive change and Justice Rekha Palli appreciated that the Delhi Government is making efforts towards changing the unfortunate circumstances.

The court said, the Delhi Government shall prioritise the persons who have received their first dose of Covaxin.

Learned counsel appearing for Delhi Government said that apart from the 90,000 doses that will be available soon, there is another batch of 40,000 doses that are coming. Hence everyone will be vaccinated.

Justice Rekha Palli directed the Delhi Government to reach out to the people who have received their first dose via sms to ensure that everyone receives their second dose.

The Central Government standing counsel Anurag Ahluwalia told the Court the Center has allocated further 40,000 doses of Covaxin to Delhi.

The Centre told Delhi High Court that the State of Delhi has already received 1.5 lakh doses of Covaxin vaccine in May 2021 and for June 2021 total of 91,960, vaccine doses are likely to be available for direct procurement to cover 18-44 years Population (including the second dose) by Delhi.

Centre further submitted that the COWIN system provides the due lists (list of beneficiaries due for 2nd dose) on a given day, containing the name and contact details of such beneficiaries to enable the state and district officials to actively tackle the beneficiaries due for the second dose.

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The CoWIN system also sends automatic SMSs to the beneficiaries, every 3rd day, starting from three days before the second dose due date, till such the beneficiary does get vaccinated with the second dose or books an appointment for the second dose, Center said in its affidavit.

The court after considering all submissions decided to keep the matter pending and the same will be listed for further hearing on 10 June.

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