- The year gone-by has been anything but crazy is stating the obvious. If economic hardships and mounting challenges to sustain a dignified livelihood to survive defined the past year, the current year hopefully offers more positivity in terms of picking up our lives in a somewhat assured manner. The timely introduction of effective vaccines has boosted the confidence of all stakeholders as also economic green shoots quite visible from critical sectors provide for considerable reassurance. This welcome news augurs’ feel-good factor after months of negativity surrounding the pandemic having singed the entire spectrum of humanity like never seen before.
PC: Gargi Singh
- Also adding to the optimistic overtones emanating from different fronts, the recently carried out economic survey offers a heartening growth of 11 % GDP for the financial year 2021-22 overcoming the contraction witnessed during the current financial year. So much is riding on the vaccination drive underway across the country that has covered a significant number of healthcare workers in the first phase targeted to cover 10 million. Starting today, the vaccination drive will commence inoculating the frontline workers with a target to cover 20 million which will be followed by 270 million elderly and people with comorbidities in the third phase.
- As can be seen, the category of frontline workers is large and as such, the scale of the vaccination should also grow proportionately and in complexity to reach out to the intended target. Only after the targeted population receives a vaccination, the inoculation drive is envisaged to be made available to the general population which will be no less than a monumentally humongous task to reach out to the last man standing. We, as a country, should feel blessed in comparison to other countries who are struggling to get life-saving vaccines simply because the country is well served with the two vaccines developed here coming as a boon.
PC: KATIE CAVENDER
- Reportedly, Indian authorities have already booked 1 billion doses of vaccines which should be ready to roll out soon after the priority groups are inoculated. Challenges will be manifolds since the second dose for the first group is scheduled to return in February and how effective is our preparedness to smoothly move ahead with multiple levels of vaccination will be put to a great test. Therefore, it is incumbent to scaling up the number of sites and inoculations per session so that the first dosing for frontline workers doesn’t slow down. Right now, there are 10,000 vaccination sites, and ensuring the same functions at 100% capacity alongside periodic scaling up of capacity to more than 1 million daily recipients and beyond should be aimed at.
- Like scaling up witnessed in the testing of virus cases should also be envisaged for vaccination drive as well since reaching out to general population will demand tremendous strategy, diligence, planning, and execution to keep the pandemic at bay. Considerable delay in inoculating people will potentially throw open the door for the mutated variants of the virus and the prospect of re-infections to wreak havoc yet again. In the meanwhile, there is no escaping from diligently observing the safety and health guidelines for virus suppressing through masking, testing, and contact tracing playing an important role. Aiming at rapid mass vaccination as against expectant stimulus packages should drive our efforts. Fingers crossed!