Dry run of Covid-19 vaccines was launched in 69 different centres including two state-run medical colleges-SSKM and NRS hospitals in the city-across the state today before the vaccination programmes in the country kicks off likely by middle of this month.

Earlier on 2 January, the first dry run of the vaccines started at three health centres at Salt Lake, Madhyamgram and Duttabad areas in North 24 Parganas. Sources at Swasthya Bhaban said the dry run of the vaccine was held across 23 districts in three centres each amidst a great deal of preparatory measures like thorough sanitisations process at all sites of the trial programmes.

Each site includes three rooms for waiting, vaccinations and medical observations for persons who were given the vaccines.

“With this trial programme we thoroughly verified the entire system like preservations and import of the vaccines and post-vaccination effects among people at the dry-run centres. It’s kind of final rehearsal before the immunisation process starts across the country,” sources said.

The state government has already requested the central government to send minimum six lakh vials of the vaccines, the sources said, adding, “The consignments are expected to land in Kolkata by Friday. All vials will be kept at Bagbazar preservation centre run by the state government,” according to the sources at Swasthya Bhaban.

The Union health ministry has already announced that the Covid-vaccination programme in the country likely to be launched by midJanuary.

As many as 30 crore frontline workers are expected to get the Covid-19 vaccine dose in the first phase. In Bengal, around seven lakh health workers in both government and private sectors have been listed so far for the mass-vaccination programme in the first phase. On Sunday, the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) under the health ministry approved two vaccines for Covid-19–Oxford’s Covishield, which is being developed by the Pune-based Serum Institute of India (SII) and Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin.

The states have said in the second phase those above 50 years and with co-morbidities would be given a vaccine. Hooghly vaccine dry run Before the final roll out of the Covid vaccine, a dry run was conducted at three centers in the district.

A mock vaccination drill was conducted to train the medical staff for the final run of the inoculation. The district chief health officer, Shubranshu Chakraborty termed today’s dry run in the district as a red letter day.

He said today it was conducted at the district headquarter hospital at Chinsurah, Polba gramin hospital and Bansberia Municipality. At Immambara hospital in Chinsurah, 25 health workers took the jab. Chakraborty said, in primary stage, inoculation will be done at 23 centres comprising 18 block hospitals, 3 sub-division hospitals, district headquarter hospital, one state general hospital.