Target is to achieve 80% coverage by February-end, says Sudhakar

The government has set a target of 80% to vaccinate healthcare workers and frontline workers in all districts in the State by February-end. This comes even as four districts, including Bengaluru Urban, are said to be lagging in vaccination.

The other districts that had registered less than 50% coverage were Bagalkot, Davangere, and Dharwad. Six districts had achieved over 70% coverage – Chickballapur (79%), Tumakuru (78%), Uttara Kannada (73%), Gadag (71%), Chikkamagaluru (70%), and Chamarajanagar (70%).

With regard to vaccination of frontline workers, Gadag (84%) and Tumakuru (71%) had outperformed other districts in the State. In this category too, Bengaluru Urban had fared poorly with just 26% coverage. Two other districts that were lagging behind included Bagalkot (23%) and Chamarajanagar (27%).

Minister for Health and Medical Education K. Sudhakar told reporters here on Monday that more than 4.24 lakh Health Department employees and 1.2 lakh frontline warriors had been administered the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine.

“We are cleaning up registration data by eliminating duplicate entries. We have set a target of 80-90% coverage by the end of this month,” he said.

He also said that Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa was monitoring the vaccination drive and would soon be chairing a videoconference with officials from all districts this weekend.

Urging more healthcare workers and frontline workers to take the vaccine, he said spread of the virus could be checked only if more people were vaccinated.

“That is the only way we can achieve herd immunity,” he said and added that the Centre had earmarked ₹35,000 crore for vaccines.

Third phase

Dr. Sudhakar said that the Centre was likely to announce the third phase of vaccinations by March. Under this, citizens above the age of 50 and those below 50 with comorbid conditions would be eligible for the vaccine.

“However, the focus of the State government right now was to ensure maximum coverage among the healthcare and frontline workers in all districts.

“The mop-up round for both categories will be held over the next three days to achieve maximum coverage,” he added.

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