KURNOOL: The third vaccination drive which was launched on May 1 in the district, opening doors to all above 18 years, is leading to severe shortage of vaccines as the demand for first dose is growing by leaps and bounds. This is unwittingly leaving those waiting for a second dose in the lurch.
People who have taken the first Covid-19 vaccination dose are making frantic efforts to get the same vaccine for the second dose as well. Most of the time they are returning disappointed. With private hospitals not getting any supplies, those who took the first jab are running after government hospitals and centres to get inoculated for a second time.
The district authorities have been advising the beneficiaries to get registered on the Cowin app and proceed to the chosen vaccine centre on the scheduled date. “From here begin our travails,” shares Nagendrantath, an advocate in Kurnool. He said he got his first jab of Covaxin a month back and was now scouting for the second dose.
After registering himself for the dose at a primary healthcare centre near Nandyal, he reached there only to be told that there was Covaxin shortage. Narayana Reddy, a resident of Kurnool, said, booked his slot on the app for Covaxin at a centre 100 km away from the city. But just before he could plan his journey, he received a message that the programme was cancelled. Hundreds of people are facing the same predicament.
When contacted, District Medical and Health Officer (DMHO) Dr Rama Giddaiah admitted there were lapses in Covid vaccine dispensation. He said that they received a directive from the government that preference should be given to second dose cases.
He informed that around 40,000 vaccines left with them would suffice for the next couple of days only. “We have got the Covishield vaccines only and we are administering the same across the district. We have no stocks of Covaxin.” When told that 28 days elapsed since the first dose of Covaxin to many people, Dr. Giddaiah said nothing would happen if there was a delay in taking the second vaccine. He appealed to the people to be patient and cooperate with the healthcare workers in the district.