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HomeBusinessMoney​Revised guidelines: New COVID vaccination programme from THIS date and other details

​Revised guidelines: New COVID vaccination programme from THIS date and other details

The government on Tuesday, June 8, has released revised guidelines for the implementation of the national COVID vaccination programme. The Centre is planning to implement this from June 21.  

The government will procure 75 per cent of the vaccines being produced by the manufacturers in the country. The vaccines procured will continue to be provided free of cost to States/UTs as has been the case from the commencement of the National Vaccination Programme. These doses will be administered by the States/UTs free of cost to all citizens as per priority through Government Vaccination Centres.

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The revised guidelines say that the vaccine doses provided free of cost by the Government of India to the States, vaccination will be prioritised to Health Care Workers, Front Line Workers, Citizens more than 45 years of age, Citizens whose second dose has become due, and Citizens 18 years and above.

The population group of citizens more than 18 years of age, States/UTs may decide their own prioritisation factoring in the vaccine supply schedule. Vaccine doses provided free of cost by the Government will be allocated to States/UTs based on criteria such as population, disease burden and the progress of vaccination. Wastage of vaccine will affect the allocation negatively. 

It also mentioned that the government will provide States/UTs advance information of vaccine doses to be supplied to them. States/UTs should similarly, further allocate doses well in advance to districts and vaccination centres. They should also put in the public domain the information about the above availability at district and vaccination centre level, and widely disseminate it among the local population, maximising the visibility and convenience of citizens. 

In order to incentivise production by vaccine manufacturers and encourage new vaccines, domestic vaccine manufacturers are given the option to also provide vaccines directly to private hospitals. This would be restricted to 25 per cent of their monthly production. States/UTs would aggregate the demand of private hospitals keeping in view equitable distribution between large and small private hospitals and regional balance, it stated. 

Based on this aggregated demand, the government will facilitate supply of these vaccines to the private hospitals and their payment through the National Health Authority’s electronic platform. This would enable the smaller and remoter private hospitals to obtain a timely supply of vaccines, and further equitable access and regional balance. 

The price of vaccine doses for private hospitals would be declared by each vaccine manufacturer, and any subsequent changes would be notified in advance. The private hospitals may charge up to a maximum of Rs 150 per dose as service charges. State Governments may monitor the price being so charged. 

All citizens irrespective of their income status are entitled to free vaccination. Those who have the ability to pay are encouraged to use private hospital’s vaccination centres, it mentioned. 

The revised program provides States/UTs with additional central government support across funding, procurement and logistics. It also facilitates scientific prioritisation, wider access, harnessing of private sector capacity and flexibility at the state and local level. 

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