Kerala, six other states to administer Covaxin from next week: Health Ministry

Hyderabad:  Telangana on sunday, 3 January 2021 took the initial steps towards preparing the ground for mass administration of the Covid-19 vaccine with a dry run in seven places in the State.-Subject Expert Committee of Central Drug Standard Control Organization on Saturday recommended Bharat Biotechâ  s â  Covaxinâ   for emergency use in India. The final decision on its approval will, however, be taken by the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI). (Photo: IANS)
India's drug regulator has reportedly given the green signal to Bharat Biotech's Covaxin for administration on children above 12 years old. Image courtesy: IANS

New Delhi: Seven more states will be administering the indigenously-developed Covaxin from next week, the health ministry said on Saturday.

The Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) had earlier this month approved Oxford COVID-19 vaccine Covishield, manufactured by the Serum Institute of India, and indigenously developed Covaxin of Bharat Biotech for restricted emergency use in the country, paving the way for a massive inoculation drive.  

Addressing a media briefing, Additional Secretary in the Union health ministry Manohar Agnani said that as on January 23, a total of 15,37,190 beneficiaries have been vaccinated for COVID-19 in 27,776 sessions.

The inoculation drive was launched on January 16 with over three crore healthcare and frontline workers prioritised to get the jabs initially.

In addition to the 12 states currently using Covaxin, seven new states -- Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Jharkhand, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Punjab and West Bengal -- will be administering the vaccine from next week, Agnani said.  

"The orientation of all programme managers of these seven states was conducted today by the ICMR (Indian Council of Medical Research) and the health ministry covering all aspects of implementation protocols," he said.

Giving updates on the ongoing COVID-19 vaccination drive, he said that "1,46,598 beneficiaries were vaccinated till 6 pm today and 123 adverse events following immunisation were reported till 6 pm on the eighth day of the vaccination drive."

No case of serious or severe adverse event following immunisation or death attributable to vaccination has been reported till date, the official said.

"Total of six deaths have been reported so far (post-vaccination). In the last 24 hours, a person aged 56 years, a resident of Gurgaon, has died. The postmortem confirms that cardio-pulmonary disease was the reason for her death and it was not related to vaccination. None of these deaths has been causally linked with COVID-19 vaccination," he said.

Agnani said 11 hospitalisations post vaccinations have been reported till date. 

"About 0.0007 per cent of people have recorded hospitalisation against vaccinations. In the last 24 hours, one person has been hospitalised at a government hospital in Guntur in Andhra Pradesh who was vaccinated on January 20," he said.

Agnani said that the training of Immunization Programme Managers of 13 countries -- Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brazil, Maldives, Mauritius, Mongolia, Morocco, Myanmar, Nepal, Oman, Seychelles and Sri Lanka -- using Indian vaccines was conducted by the health ministry, covering all aspects of vaccine roll-out, over two days.

Of the 1,46,598 vaccinations carried out on Saturday, the highest number of people were inoculated in Gujarat (22,063) followed by Maharashtra (21,751), Odisha (14,892), Bihar (12,165) and Andhra Pradesh  (11,562), according to ministry data. 

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