SOON, COVID VACCINATION DRIVE IN STATE’S COLLEGES: CS

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• All eligible college students, staffers to get first jab in July

CHANDIGARH : Giving a further boost to the ongoing Covid vaccination drive, the state government would soon launch a special campaign to inoculate all the students above 18 years of age and staffers, both administrative and academic, at the colleges in Punjab.

For this purpose, special camps would be held at the colleges and all the eligible students and staffers would be given the first dose of the vaccine within July itself.

A decision to this effect was taken at the 96th meeting of health sector response and procurement committee, chaired by the Chief Secretary, Ms Vini Mahajan, here on Monday.

She asked the Health and Family Welfare department to appoint a team at the state as well as district levels for weekly review of the Covid positivity data in order to sound an alert whenever positivity rate rises anywhere in the state.

She also asked the Principal Health Secretary, Hussan Lal, to appoint a nodal officer to ensure optimum utilisation of Covid related health infrastructure in the state at the earliest.

Calling for aggressive contact tracing and testing to keep the virus surge under control, the Chief Secretary asked the Health department to ensure complete accuracy in entering and updating the testing data on Cova mobile app by all the districts and the same must also be reflected in the daily Covid report. The Principal Health Secretary was asked to assign the responsibility to an official for accomplishing this task.

Asking the Health department to review the availability of fateh kits at all the health and wellness centres besides all other healthcare institutions in the state, the Chief Secretary called for a status report in this regard.

Besides, the PHSC was instructed to prepare a fleet of 270 ambulances, including those procured after 2017, and scrap the old ambulances, which were unfit for use.

Stressing the need for adequate health manpower, their proper training and requisite equipment to defeat the virus spread, the Chief Secretary asked that the setting up of new health institutions, including CHCs, PHCs and trauma centres, besides upgradation of existing health infrastructure should be completed at the earliest.

Ms Mahajan directed the Medical Education department to take up the matter with Centre for further ramping up of facilities at the PGI satellite centre in Sangrur and AIIMS in Bathinda to make them robust to tackle the much-anticipated third Covid wave.

Congratulating the Health department for inoculating more than six lakh people in a day during the mass vaccination drive held on Saturday, the Chief Secretary said the same pace should also be maintained in the coming days.

Principal Health Secretary, Hussan Lal, apprised the Chief Secretary that as many as 72,12,629 eligible persons have been inoculated so far and the drive will be carried out at the full pace to ensure the coverage of every eligible citizen in the state to check the pandemic spread.

Health and Medical Education Adviser Dr KK Talwar, Principal Secretary Medical Education and Research DK Tiwari, PHSC MD Tanu Kashyap and BFUHS Vice-Chancellor Dr Raj Bahadur also attended the meeting.

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