625 centres across Kanniyakumari district to vaccinate 85,000 people during Sunday’s mass drive

By Special Correspondent

A massive campaign to inoculate as many as 85,000 people with the COVID-19 vaccine through 625 centres has been planned on September 12 (Sunday), said Kanniyakumari District Collector M. Arvind, on Thursday.

Speaking to reporters, he said that the district had inoculated 52% of the eligible people with the first done and 12% with the second dose so far. The district has 47,000 vaccines in hand and the supply is now smooth from the government, he said.

Apart from government hospitals, PHCs and special camps in educational institutions had been identified for administering the vaccines from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Sunday. To communicate to the people, autorickshaws have been deployed in panchayats and urban local bodies.

“Our aim is to provide the vaccine centres within 500 metres or maximum one km from the dwellings of each individual. Each centre would have minimum 200 vaccines,” Mr. Arvind said.

When asked the reasons for low percentage of people taking the vaccine shots, the Collector said that an awareness campaigns on the safety aspects had been disseminated. The apprehension and other medical reasons had prevented people from taking the shots, he said.

He said that 33,000 government staff (including frontline workers and doctors) in the district have taken the vaccine, which was about 90 %. “The vaccines are safe...a campaign would be conducted,” the Collector replied and appealed to the media to take up a larger role in the campaign.

Officials from the Education and Health departments said that so far only one school had reported symptoms of COVID-19 --about 10 students had been asked to isolation and the SOP was in place.

The officials, Mr. Arvind said, imposed fines as per the laws against people and institutions who violated the protocol. On an average, ₹1 lakh fine was collected daily. However, he clarified that the objective was not to collect fines, but to ensure that the people were protected from the virus. He recalled the days when many hospitals experienced oxygen shortage and other issues. After taking the vaccine shots, the inference taken globally showed that people were largely safe. Thus, the vaccination camps on Sunday has been planned in a big way and with more people benefiting, the district may be able to achieve the status of COVID-19 free district soon, he said.


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