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India's COVID-19 Vaccine Dry Run Begins In All States, Day After Covishield Recommendation

A dry run of the COVID-19 vaccination will be conducted on Saturday in 116 districts across 259 sites in various states and Union Territories of India

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A dry run of the COVID-19 vaccination delivery system in all states across the country is set to take place on Saturday, January 2 to test the mechanism laid out for the COVID-19 immunisation drive, which is expected to begin soon. This comes the morning after India's drug regulator's special expert committee (SEC) recommended the Oxford-AstraZeneca-Serum Institute 'Covishield' vaccine for emergency use.

This is the second dry run being conducted in the country, the first major run-through was held on December 28 and 29 where the Centre conducted vaccination drive in four states, namely - Assam, Andhra Pradesh, Punjab and Gujarat, which had gone off smoothly.

As India prepares to roll-out its inoculation drive to stem the global epidemic, here’s all you need to know about the ongoing dry runs being conducted by the Union Health Ministry.

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What is a vaccine dry run?

A dry run is a dummy process that will help the government assess how ready we are for the nationwide COVID-19 immunization program. It will also highlight any shortcomings in the mechanism laid out for the vaccine drive so they can be addressed beforehand and avoid any difficulty.

The aim of the dry run is to test linkages between planning and implementation and to identify the challenges. The dry run will also test Co-WIN application, developed specifically for Coronavirus inoculation drive, in a field environment.

Who will participate in the dry run?

The dry run will see the participation of the staff of the designated vaccination centres, followed by a select group of health care workers. Each centre will identify test beneficiaries for the COVID-19 vaccine dry run. 

READ | Health Minister Reviews COVID Vaccine Dry Run Preparations Even As SEC Meets On Approvals

Where will the dry run be conducted?

Today’s dummy vaccination drive will be conducted in 116 districts across 259 sites in various states and Union Territories. Some states also include districts that have poor logistical support.  

Dry runs will be held in the following centres across states:

Delhi: Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital in Shahdara; Urban Primary Health Centre in Daryaganj and Venkateshwar Hospital in Dwarka

Punjab: The state is conducting dry run in Patiala. The identified sites include - Government Medical College; Sadhbhavna Hospital; and the Community Health Centre in Shatrana.

Haryana: Here, the dry run will be held in three health centres in Panchkula

Jammu and Kashmir: Dy run will be held in 9 hospitals in 3 districts - Jammu, Srinagar and Kulgam.

Chhattisgarh: All the seven districts of Raipur, Surguja, Bilaspur, Rajnandgaon, Durg, Bastar and Gaurela-Pendra-Marwahi (GPM).

Uttar Pradesh: Sahara Hospital, RML Hospital, King George's Medical University and SGPGI as well one centre each in Mall block and Malihabad block in Lucknow

Jharkhand: Ranchi, East Singhbhum, Chatra, Palamu and Pakur districts

Gujarat: Dahod, Bhavnagar, Valsad and Anand districts

Maharashtra: Pune, Nagpur, Jalna and Nandurbar districts

Karnataka: Bengaluru (Urban), Belagavi, Kalaburagi, Mysuru and Shivamogga districts

Kerala: Thiruvananthapuram, Idukki, Wayanad and Palakkad districts

Bengal: Urban Primary Health Centres at Duttabad; Madhyagram and at Amdanga Rural Hospital in North 24 Parganas district.

How will dry runs be conducted?

During the dry run process, each designated centre will carry out every step of the inoculation drive, from registering test beneficiaries in Co-Win database to verifying their ID cards. The vaccinators will also follow the process of registration, verification, mock vaccination and post-vaccine observation.

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