PUNE: The state health department aims to vaccinate nearly 51,000 beneficiaries daily when the Covid-19 inoculation drive begins for priority groups.
Dr Archana Patil, director of state health services, said that the drives would be carried out at 511 vaccination centres across the state. Officials are currently identifying such sites.
Dr Patil said that every municipal corporation in the state would have eight to 10 designated vaccination centres within its limits.
“Basic facilities that are required at these sites include internet connectivity and trained IT personnel who know the CoWIN system well,” she said.
CoWin, or Covid-19 Vaccine Intelligence Network, is the system the government has set up to monitor vaccine distribution nationwide.
“We already have the cold chain infrastructure. We also have teams in place to monitor any adverse events,” Dr Patil said.
She said each site would aim to inoculate 100 beneficiaries every day.
“There are ample vaccine carriers for the drives. The state has nearly 4,000 cold chain points with ice-lined refrigerators, deep freezers, and cold boxes. At regional and district headquarters, we have 21 walk-in coolers and four walk-in freezers for vaccine storage. The vaccine will be stored in ice-lined refrigerators and will be transported to the sites in vaccine carriers,” she said.
As for additional equipment, the top official said that the state was expecting 549 ice-lined refrigerators from the Centre soon, besides 150 more deep freezers, six walk-in freezers and two walk-in coolers.
“Additional vaccine carriers will also be supplied, but existing infrastructure, including syringes from ongoing immunisation programmes, will suffice during the first phase of Covid-19 vaccination in Maharashtra,” Dr Patil said.
National Health Mission commissioner for the state Dr N Ramaswami said there were enough facilities and manpower for storage and transport. “The success of the dry runs has also reinforced the state’s preparedness. Technology issues with the CoWIN app are also being resolved,” Ramaswami said.
He said reports of spotty internet connectivity had been only from remote the parts of Gadchiroli, Nandurbar and Nashik. He said that data of eight lakh frontline health workers from the state had been uploaded on the CoWin app for priority vaccination.