Gangtok, January 12th (IPR): Chief Secretary Shri. S. C. Gupta chaired the second meeting of State Steering Committee to review the preparedness regarding the roll-out of COVID-19 vaccination in the State, at Tashiling Secretariat, today.
It may be mentioned here that the vaccination process will commence from 16th of January 2021 throughout the country.
Chief Secretary, Shri S.C. Gupta, in his address said that the COVID-19 vaccination programme is the biggest vaccination drive which is all set to kickstart in the State from 16th of January 2021. He also informed that the vaccination drive would be carried out in the State as per the guidelines of the Government of India. He also called for a coordinated approach and efforts from all line departments in various stages of vaccination drive in the State. The Chief Secretary also apprised to maintain COVID-19 appropriate behaviour at all times.
During the meeting, a detailed presentation on the preparedness of COVID-19 vaccination in the State was made by the Director/State Immunization Officer Dr. Phumzay Denzongpa. She informed that the first group of beneficiaries to receive the vaccine will be Health-care workers. The second group will have front-line workers that include- State and Central Police personnel, Armed Forces personnel, home guards, civil defence, Disaster Management Volunteers, Municipal Workers, Prison Staff and Revenue workers involved in containment and surveillance. The third group will prioritise people above 50 years and people below 50 years with comorbidities. Subsequently, the vaccine will be made available to the general populace.
It was also informed that the State Government will receive 12,500 doses of vaccine in the next couple of days. The two-session sites have been identified for COVID-19 vaccination launch in the State, namely, New STNM Hospital in East District and Gyalshing District Hospital in West District.
It was also informed that till date, 9414 State Health Care workers, 148 Central Health Care Workers and 5511 frontline workers have been registered in CoWIN app.
The meeting had the presence of DGP, Shri A. Shanker Rao, Principal Secretary Health, Shri K. Sreenivasulu, Principal Secretary Home, Shri R. Telang, and Secretaries of various other Departments. The meeting was joined through video conferencing by the District Collectors, Chief Medical Officers and line officials.
Later, a press conference was also held to disseminate information on the roll-out of COVID-19 vaccination in the State at the Conference Hall of Tashiling Secretariat. The press conference was chaired by Principal Secretary Health and was attended by Principal Secretary Home, DG-cum-Secretary, Health, Secretary IPR Department and Director/State Immunization Officer.
During the briefing, DG cum Secretary Health Dr. Pemba T. Bhutia made an appeal to the people to ensure participation for vaccination and also to ensure COVID appropriate behaviour to keep oneself and others safe.
Principal Secretary Health informed that there will be a gap of 28 days between 2 doses and also added that effectiveness begins only after 14 days of administering the second dose. He also prioritised special focus on proper information dissemination that the vaccine is safe and immunogenic.