The Union Health Ministry announced on Sunday that it will provide second dose of Covid vaccines free of cost to beneficiaries who had received their first jab in private vaccination centres before April 30.

As per the latest order, beneficiaries falling into the priority group of Healthcare Workers (HCWs), Frontline Workers (FLWs), and those above 45 years who have taken their first dose at a private Covid vaccination centres (CVCs) on and before April 30 will be eligible to receive their second dose at government CVCs free of cost.

According to a letter issued by the Additional Secretary of the Union Health Ministry Manohar Agnani, the beneficiaries of the priority group can also avail their second doses in private CVCs being run under ‘other than Government of India’ channel on a payment basis at the rate fixed by such private CVCs.

“Beneficiaries falling into the priority group of HCWs, FLWs, and a person aged above 45 years who have taken their first dose at a private COVID vaccination centers (CVCs) on and before April 30 will be eligible to receive their second dose at government CVCs free of cost,” it said.

This to help the beneficiaries who had received their first dose at private CVCs but yet to complete the two-dose vaccination schedule.

India has administered as many as 15,68,16,031 vaccine doses since the COVID-19 vaccination drive started on January 16.

The country also started the third phase of the vaccination drive on May 1 for the beneficiaries of the age group 18-44.