Odisha asks collectors to intensify vax drive for 18-59 age group
Bhubaneswar: With Covid-19 cases rising day-by-day in the state, the Odisha government on Thursday asked all collectors and municipal commissioners to intensify vaccination of 18-59 age group on campaign mode from Friday.
Chief Secretary S.C. Mahapatra has given this instruction to the officers while holding a review meeting virtually on the Covid-19 situation in the state.
Conducting a district-wise review, Mahapatra directed to increase the number of daily Covid testing, ensure function of the call centre on a 24 x 7 basis and intensify the awareness and enforcement activities like wearing of masks, avoiding the crowd, and maintenance of physical distance of 6 feet.
The chief secretary asked the officials to conduct vaccination of students of the above age group in various engineering colleges, hostels, higher educational institutes as well as in urban areas in a massive way.
Medical colleges and district administrations were asked to set up separate Covid-19 wards in public hospitals and be in all readiness for enhancing the number of beds as per requirement.
Health Secretary Nikunja Bihari Dhal has asked the officials for proper execution of village and panchayat-wise vaccination programmes in rural areas and ward-wise in urban areas.
Development Commissioner Pradeep Kumar Jena suggested involving health workers, anganwadi workers, public representatives, voluntary organisations and women’s self-help groups in the vaccination drive.
On Thursday, the state reported 804 new Covid-19 cases taking the total active cases to 4,262. The positivity rate jumped to 4.18 per cent as the cases were detected after testing 19,218 samples.
Khurda, where the capital Bhubaneswar is located, reported the highest number of 307 cases, followed by 119 cases in Cuttack. The death toll remained at 9,127.
Earlier on Thursday, state health and family welfare director Bijay Panigrahi informed that the state government is prepared to provide free booster doses at 2,500 vaccination centres from Friday.
However, the state doesn’t have enough stock of vaccines compared to the number of beneficiaries, and the Centre will be requested to provide the required vaccine, he added.