STATE TIMES NEWS
New Delhi: The Union health ministry on Tuesday said 29,000 cold chain points, 240 walk-in coolers, 70 walk-in freezers, 45,000 ice-lined refrigerators, 41,000 deep freezers and 300 solar refrigerators will be used for COVID-19 vaccine storage.Providing the details about cold-chain management at a press conference here, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan said guidelines for estimation of electrical and non-electrical cold chain equipment and their strengthening have been issued to states by the Centre.The guidelines for management of cold chain at last cold chain points and session sites have also been issued, he said.
New Delhi: The possibility of an adverse event after being vaccinated for COVID-19 cannot be ruled out, the government said on Tuesday and asked states and union territories to be prepared for this as part of the anti-coronavirus inoculation drive.Secretary in the health ministry Rajesh Bhushan said that adverse events following immunisation (AEFI) are critical aspect and states have been asked to identify at least one adverse event following immunisation (AEFI)management centre in each block.“Even during universal immunisation programmes, which have been going on for decades, some adverse effects are seen in children and pregnant women after they are administered shots. “So, we can’t deny the possibility of an adverse event when the COVID-19 vaccination begins. In countries where inoculation has already started, especially in the UK, adverse events took place on the very first day. So, it is essential that states and union territories prepare for this too,” Bhushan said.Detailed instructions on infection prevention and control practices during vaccination and management of minor, severe, serious AEFI have been issued to states by the Centre, he said.“States have been asked to identify at least one AEFI management centre in each block. PHCs, CHCs, district hospitals, private health facilities or any other fixed health facility with medical officers and para-medical staff can be identified as AEFI management centres,” he said.Further, every session site has to be linked to a designated AEFI management centre and AEFI can also be reported through Co-WIN, –a digitalised platform, which will be used to track enlisted beneficiaries for the vaccination and anti-coronavirus vaccines on a real-time basis, he added.
“A total of 29,000 cold chain points, 240 walk-in coolers, 70 walk-in freezers, 45,000 ice-lined refrigerators, 41,000 deep freezers and 300 solar refrigerators will be used, Bhushan said.“All these equipment have already been delivered to the states. Some other equipment are being supplied,” he said.Giving more details about the preparations, the senior official said 36 states and Union territories have concluded meetings of State Steering Committees and State Task Force, while 633 districts have concluded meetings of the District Task Force in this regard.Twenty-three ministries and departments in the Centre and states have been identified and assigned roles like planning, implementation, social mobilisation, awareness generation, among others, for the vaccine roll-out, he said.Training modules for medical officers, vaccinator officers, alternative vaccinator officers, cold chain handlers, supervisors, data managers and ASHA coordinators are also finalized, and physical training as well as training on virtual/online platforms have started, the health secretary said.National and state Training of Trainers (ToTs) workshops have also been completed, he added.In reply to a media query, Bhushan said state governments have been allowed to form vaccination session sites even at units where the Army or paramilitary is posted.Vaccinating 100-200 people in each session per day, monitoring them for 30 minutes after administering the shots for any adverse event and allowing only one beneficiary at a time are among the guidelines issued by the Centre for the COVID-19 inoculation drive.According to the guidelines issued to states recently, the COVID Vaccine Intelligence Network (Co-WIN) system–a digitalised platform–will be used to track enlisted beneficiaries for the vaccination and anti-coronavirus vaccines on a real-time basis.
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