The Darjeeling district administration has prepared a list of around 10,000 health workers and personnel associated with uniformed services as frontline responders in Covid management on a priority basis, who will be given the first round of Covid-19 vaccine shots when made available. The administration and the health department are also readying the infrastructure for the storage of the vaccines as part of the cold chain system.
According to health department officials, training for vaccinators is also under way.
“We have prepared a list of around 10,000 healthcare workers, providers, including both government and private doctors, followed by frontliners like the police, central armed forces, civic body workers engaged in Covid-19 management for the first phase of Covid-19 vaccination. The list has been sent to the Centre and uploaded on the digitised platform of the COVID-19 Vaccine Intelligence Network (Co-WIN),” said a senior administrative officer.
According to the guidelines issued by the Centre, the Co-WIN will be used to track enlisted people for the vaccination and anti-coronavirus vaccines on a real-time basis.
In the later phase, people above the age of 50 and those under 50 with comorbidities will be administered the vaccine.
“We have already concluded two meetings. A steering committee and task forces for the vaccination at the district level and block level have been set up,” the official said.
According to the district chief medical officer of health, Dr Pralay Acharya, preparations for infrastructure development at storage facilities are going on in full swing. It is learnt that the cold chain points where vaccines for routine immunisation are stored will be used.
“We have already identified the facilities for the storage of Covid-19 vaccines and there are 30 such centres in both Hills and the Plains, including the North Bengal Medical College and Hospital, so far. The arrangements are being made for storing the vaccine-packs,” Dr Acharya said.
Sources said steps will be taken according to the guidelines of the desired temperature for storing the vials.
Officials said the vaccination distribution point will not be less than the primary health centres.
Dr Acharya said that as part of the preparations, training modules for people handling vaccinations like medical officers, vaccination officers, alternative vaccination officers, cold chain handlers, supervisors, data entry operators, ANM (Auxiliary Nursing Midwifery) have been conducted.