Hyderabad: Hundreds of healthcare workers in government hospitals are severely upset over not being able to book slots for getting themselves vaccinated against Covid-19. The current system of booking vaccination slots on the cowin.gov.in website is restricted to those above 45 years. Doctors say many of them, especially postgraduate students, interns and nurses working in the state-run Covid-19 hospitals are not able to book slots.
“There are many who have to get their second dose shots. It is not just common people, even doctors and nurses are running around the city trying to find a place where they can get their second shot in time,” Dr Mahesh Kumar, president of Healthcare Reforms Doctors Association, said on Thursday.
“Orders from the Director of Health Services to stop walk-in vaccination even for healthcare workers and other frontline staffers through self-registration do not make any sense. How can those working in Covid wards be denied vaccination? Many are due for 2nd dose. It is true that there was some hesitation in the initial days about taking the vaccines but now the situation has changed,” he said.
He said it was high time that the health department officials issued a circular allowing healthcare workers for walk-in vaccinations, or even better, establish a designated vaccination centre in each district for healthcare workers and frontline warriors, so that they can concentrate more on their duties of saving lives.
As per the vaccination data provided on Thursday by the director of health services’ office up to Wednesday evening, 63,337 healthcare workers in Telangana have to get their second dose of Covid-19 vaccines. And a whopping 1,65,494 front line workers too need to get their second doses of the vaccines. However, all of them do not need to get them immediately as the second dose of the vaccines are to be taken about a month after taking the first dose.
But the absence of an option for them to register for getting their shots has left doctors, nurses, other healthcare and frontline workers in the lurch with respect to Covid-19 vaccination.
Several doctors working in various government hospitals who spoke to this correspondent said it was not just common people who had to spend hours in front of a computer to try and find a slot for registering for vaccination. A young doctor from Osmania General Hospital said OGH previously had a vaccination centre which had been shut down. “We are asked to work in Covid wards, and we will. But when we ask for our vaccine doses, there is no answer,” another doctor said.
This situation, if continued, could result in healthcare workers not willing to work in Covid wards anymore, Dr Mahesh Kumar said.
· 48,055 get first dose
· 30,765 get second doses
· Total 42,72,935 administered first doses
· Total 6,86,220 administered second doses