Covid surge: Dakshina Kannada health dept to scale up drive; 36% of targeted population vaccinated |

MANGALURU: With the number of cases reported in Dakshina Kannada district touching three digits daily, the health department is trying to scale up the vaccination drive by involving big institutions, colleges and training more health workers, especially nursing college students, to vaccinate targeted populations.
As of now, the Dakshina Kannada Health Department, in association with various institutions, has vaccinated close to 36% of the targeted population.
Dr B V Rajesh, RCH officer, told TOI that of the targeted population of 4.17 lakh in the above 45+ age category and two lakh in the 60+ age category, they have vaccinated 2.22 lakh, adding the progress was satisfactory considering the constraints. The average daily vaccination figure is about 4,000, and on Tuesday the figure went as high as 9,000.
The modified plan is to approach sub centres, where awareness is being created by Gram Panchayat, NGOs, Yuvaka Sangha to motivate people to approach vaccination centres. The district has 393 sub centres, 66 Primary Health Centres (PHCs), 12 Urban PHCs, four taluk hospitals and six community health centres.
“As of now we are organizing vaccinations at one or two PHC plus one sub centre. On Thursday, we will do it at two sub centres per PHC and in that way we will cover about 200 sub centres,” he said.
The health department is also approaching big institutions like MRPL where there are 8,000 employees of which roughly 50% are above 45, KIOCL, where in the last three days 300 employees have been vaccinated. We will approach BASF, banks and colleges in a day or two,’’ said Dr Rajesh.
Apart from this training is also being imparted to nursing students. “We have trained 100 nursing students from eight colleges here which could fill the gap as far as Junior Health Assistants in sub-centres is concerned to some extent,” he noted.
VACCINES AVAILABLE: Dr Rajesh said that enough quantities of vaccines, both covaxin and Covishield, were available. At present the district health office has 20,000 doses enough for three days and more will arrive from Delhi by Friday. He said a third vaccine Sputnik may also be available in a fortnight or two.
Regarding chances of people being given a different second dose vaccine, Dr Rajesh said the app was designed in such a way that it was not possible to vaccinate a Covaxin patient with a Covishield vaccine. The app will flag such discrepancy during verification of patient details, he added.

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