'Har Ghar Dastak 2.0' to focus on COVID vaccination of 12-18 years age group via school-based campaign

The cumulative COVID-19 vaccine doses administered in the country has crossed 193.45 crore so far.
For representational purposes (Photo | AP)
For representational purposes (Photo | AP)

NEW DELHI: The two-month long 'Har Ghar Dastak 2.0' campaign that will be launched from June 1 will target vaccination of children aged 12-18 years against Covid through a special school-based drive, officials said on Tuesday.

Besides, the campaign will also target beneficiaries due for second Covid dose as well as those eligible for precaution dose in the 60 plus age-group through door-to-door activities, they said.

Flagging concerns about the considerably slow pace of Covid vaccination, the Union Health Ministry on May 20 advised all states and Union Territories to hold a two month long 'Har Ghar Dastak 2.0' campaign with detailed district, block and village levels plans.

The objective is to vaccinate and saturate the eligible population groups for first, second and precaution doses through door-to-door campaigns, with focussed campaigns for old age homes, schools and colleges, including the out-of-school children (for focussed coverage of children aged 12-18 years population), as well as prisons, brick kilns, etc, it said.

UNICEF will support the Health Ministry in this campaign.

The sub-optimal coverage of persons aged 60 years and above with precaution dose that renders them vulnerable, along with considerably slower speed of coverage in the 12-14 years cohort was also pointed out by the Health Ministry.

"As part of the intensive second round campaign, focussed coverage of children aged 12-18 years will also be undertaken through a school-based campaign, including government, private and informal schools like Madrasas, Day Care Schools.

"A 'Har Ghar Dastak' round will be held for non-school going children and also those whose are schools are closed for summer vacations," an official said.

The cumulative COVID-19 vaccine doses administered in the country has crossed 193.45 crore so far.

The official explained that the National COVID-19 Vaccination Programme has been ongoing since a year and four months during which it entailed multiple challenges and also witnessed unparalleled achievements.

During the course of time, several strategic interventions were instituted to make the vaccination programme and its process more people-centric, convenient and pragmatic, the official said.

Experiencing successful expansion of the programme in terms of scale and reach while maintaining the quality of the vaccinations services in implementing these strategic interventions (workplace CVCs, Near-to-home CVCs, Mobile vaccination teams etc), generated the required impetus and paved the way for 'Har Ghar Dastak' Teekakaran Abhiyaan, the official said.

"It was inspired from the time-tested strategy of Mission Indradhanush and included mobilization, awareness and vaccination activities for reaching out to all the missed out and dropped out eligible beneficiaries of first and second dose through house-to-house visit from November 3, 2021 onwards.

"The initiative contributed immensely towards the astounding success of the programme by reaching out to the last mile beneficiaries including the old-aged, differently-abled and even the vaccine hesitant populations," the official added.

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