Three days to go, Karnataka awaits guidelines | Bengaluru News – Times of India


Estimates suggest that 1.3 crore to 1.5 crore people above 45 years in Karnataka will be vaccinated in Phase 2

BENGALURU: With just three days to go for the nationwide launch of Covid-19 vaccination for senior citizens and those above 45 years with comorbidities, Karnataka is clueless about the modalities.
It’s estimated that 1.3 crore to 1.5 crore persons in the state, above 45 years, will be vaccinated. On Thursday, the state health and family welfare department met private hospitals and discussed their support.
There could be 10,000 government-run and 20,000 private vaccination centres across the country to administer the vaccine. The charges to be levied by private hospitals will be fixed by the government, while it will be free at government facilities.
A member of the Private Hospitals and Nursing Homes Association (PHANA) said the government is preparing a booth-wise list of beneficiaries. “The state is awaiting central government guidelines. Like it was for healthcare and frontline workers, there are talks of making registration compulsory in the Co-WIN app prior to inoculation. The public will have to choose between government and private hospitals to get the vaccination,” he said.
All hospitals empanelled with the state government for Ayushman Bharat Arogya Karnataka health scheme are likely to be part of the drive.
“By involving private hospitals, the coverage can be aggressive as hospitals will take proactive steps,” another hospital head who attended the meeting told TOI.
According to Dr H Sudarshan Ballal, chairman, Manipal Hospitals, and member, Covid expert committee, the process should be hassle-free for citizens. “The best thing is that the government has agreed to include private hospitals in the drive. It’s more a social responsibility, not a profit-making venture. There’ll be a nominal cost, and we’ll leave the government to fix it,” said Dr Ballal.
He said Manipal Hospitals, through all its facilities, can vaccinate nearly 20,000-30,000 persons a day. “At our Old Airport Road branch, we can vaccinate close to 5,000 people a day. Walk-in vaccination, just like Covid testing, will encourage more people to come forward,” he said.
Private hospitals, however, do not have clarity on whether the government will supply vaccines to hospitals or vaccines should be directly procured from manufacturers. There is no clarity about which vaccines — Covishield or Covaxin — should be used.
Dr KV Trilok Chandra, health commissioner, said: “We should have clarity over the next 2-3 days.”

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Sagar Biswas

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