Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope, on Wednesday, informed that the state government would be ramping up the Covid-19 vaccination drive in districts with a high positivity and growth rate. Currently, four districts -Pune, Satara, Kolhapur and Sanghi- fall in the list. These districts contribute 50 per cent to the daily caseload. With the possibility of the third wave on the horizon, Tope announced that there is a need to expedite the drive and develop herd immunity.
“We have directed the nodal officers of each district to ramp up the vaccination drive,” he said. According to the statistics, Pune has administered 62.37 lakh doses, followed by Kolhapur with 17.99 lakh doses, Satara with 12.27 lakh doses and Sangli with 12.22 lakh doses.
Meanwhile, Tope, on Wednesday, reiterated the demand for more vaccines. Because of the inadequate stock, they are unable to administer the second dose to the beneficiaries who are eligible. Moreover, there is a need to vaccinate more people, as cases and deaths due to the virus are also high.
Despite becoming the first state in India to administer both the doses to more than 10 million eligible beneficiaries, Maharashtra continues to suffer from a shortage of vaccine. “We have the capacity to administer 15 lakh vaccines per day. However, the state can only inoculate 2 to 3 lakh beneficiaries per day. We are pushing for uninterrupted vaccine supply from the central government," Tope said.
The Covid-19 vaccination drive was suspended several times across cities and districts due to the shortage. Till now, the state has vaccinated 4,52,46,080 beneficiaries, of which 3,37,96,696 have received the first dose and the remaining 1,14,49,384 have received both doses. “We want to immunize people as soon as possible. In this way, the effect of the third wave in the state would be less,” Tope said.
Moreover, the data shows that countries which have vaccinated the maximum percentage of their adult population have been able to contain the third wave of the pandemic, Tope said.