Karnataka: CoWIN tech glitches force officials to take drive offline | Bengaluru News – Times of India

BENGALURU: Vaccine Intelligence Network (CoWIN) glitches haunted vaccinators across the state on Saturday, resulting in the inoculation programme being largely conducted offline.
None of the 13,408 people vaccinated on Saturday received a digital certificate which the app is designed to send. Also, several healthcare workers, who were scheduled to receive the vaccine on Saturday, did not get a text on Friday confirming their place in the queue. As a result, they didn’t turn up. “This glitch was a major reason – besides hesitancy among healthcare workers – for the low numbers on Saturday,” health officials said.
The vaccination process entails creating vaccination sites and uploading details of beneficiaries on the app. Registered healthcare workers get a message a day prior to vaccination. Those who submit Aadhaar number also get a beneficiary reference number. Identity verification teams at sites must cross-check ID cards and authenticate it on the portal. After vaccination, CoWIN sends another message indicating successful vaccination, followed by a certificate.
“We had a tough time when the session began on Saturday,” said a health department official managing a site in Bengaluru. “Of the 243 sites in Karnataka, only 200 were created. Only a few received messages regarding the schedule. Because the portal was hanging, the vaccination process continued offline.”
Some received messages of successful vaccination after a couple of hours and others as late as on Sunday. A 41-year-old healthcare worker from a primary health centre in Ramanagar, one of the few who received a certificate, said it includes beneficiary and vaccination details. It specifies ID card details, beneficiary reference ID, address, name of the vaccine, date when the first dose was given, name of the vaccinator, date for the next dose and the name of the vaccination session site. The certificate also includes a QR code and a photograph of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
“In most places, vaccination was done offline and details were later uploaded,” said a district health officer.
Dr BV Rajesh, official in charge of the drive in Dakshina Kannada, said the district also faced glitches with the CoWIN app and that messages were not reaching beneficiaries. “Many other districts reported the same problem, so it wasn’t confined to our district alsone. The glitches need to be rectified, but the process is slow,” he said.
Health minister K Sudhakar brushed aside the glitches saying, “This is a humongous exercise and teething problems are expected. All issues will be sorted out by Monday.”

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Sagar Biswas

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