NEW DELHI: The Centre on Tuesday rebuffed the demands made by some states to open up vaccination for more age groups, saying vaccine availability is “finite” and the aim is to protect those who are most vulnerable, and not to “administer to those who want it but to those who need it.”
During a weekly press conference, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan said that many people are asking why isn’t the government opening up vaccination for all those above 18 years. He said that even Western countries have conducted the vaccination drive in phases.
“The basic aim is to reduce death through vaccination. The other aim is to protect your healthcare system. If healthcare workers, doctors, nurses, paramedics and others fall sick, who will work in hospitals? So the aim, for any country, is to protect those who are the most vulnerable. The aim is never to administer the vaccine to those who want it but to those who need it,” Bhushan said.
NITI Aayog member (Health) Dr VK Paul also said that the narrative has to be seen in a scientific way. He said that priority groups have been decided who are vulnerable to mortality. “Because history will only remember how many deaths have taken place. Globally, vaccine is finite.”
Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal and his Maharashtra counterpart Uddhav Thackeray on Monday requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi to relax the age limit for the vaccination. The IMA also wrote to Modi suggesting that vaccination be allowed for all people above the age of 18 years.
Negative test must or Rs 1,000 fine in Maha
Mumbai: People involved in essential services either have to be vaccinated or carry Covid test result to work in Maharashtra. “If anyone is found violating the government norms, then he or she will be penalised Rs 1,000,” the state government said in its order.
Chouhan launches awareness campaign
Bhopal: Madhya Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan launched a 24-hour Swasthya Agraha to appeal people to follow Covid appropriate behaviour. Chouhan chaired a Cabinet meeting from the venue and also held the daily COVID-19 situation review meeting through virtual tools.
‘News channel can sensitise people ‘
The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting urged private news channels to raise awareness on vaccination of those who are eligible and on Covid appropriate behaviour. It issued an advisory to private TV news channels, seeking help to disseminate the message in public interest.