MUMBAI: As many as 99,242 health workers have been administered the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine in Maharashtra since the drive was launched on January 16, a senior official said on Saturday, adding the state will conduct the exercise on five days per week beginning January 25 to cover more beneficiaries quickly.
Pradeep Vyas, principal secretary, state health department, said the number of days to conduct the vaccination drive per week has been raised from four days to five days now.
"Nearly 1 lakh health workers have been given the first dose of vaccine since January 16 in the state. To increase the reach, the state has now decided to carry out the inoculation drive for COVID-19 for five days a week starting from Monday next week," he said.
"The vaccine's first dose was administered today to 24,282 health workers, taking the total (beneficiaries covered) to 99,242. Gondia, Gadchiroli, Wardha, Amravati, Jalna, Beed, Dhule, Hingoli, Nanded and Osmanabad districts reported over 100 per cent vaccination. It means more people could be vaccinated than the target for the day," he added.
According to officials, around three lakh health workers will be vaccinated now as they need to take the second dose after a gap of four weeks.
Earlier, state health minister Rajesh Tope had said the plan was to vaccinate only 50 per cent healthcare workers because Maharashtra got less than eight lakh dosages, with a 10 per cent wastage risk.
In Nashik district, a total of 1,171 health workers of the targeted 1,300 received the COVID-19 jabs on Saturday at 13 centres.
One of the beneficiaries suffered minor problems after the vaccination but he was immediately given first aid and his condition recovered, an official release said.
No serious health issues were reported during the vaccination drive, which was conducted smoothly.
The number and percentage of vaccination in other districts under the Nashik division is: Ahmednagar 870 (72.50 %), Dhule 435 (108.75 %), Jalgaon 664 (94.86 %) and Nandurbar 308 (77 %).
In all, out of the 4,000 targetted beneficiaries for the day in the Nashik division, 3,448 health workers, or 86.20 per cent, were administered the vaccine on Saturday.