The Indian Medical Association (IMA) has urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to include all people above the age of 18 years in the nationwide vaccination drive to mitigate surge in COVID-19 cases. Besides this, the IMA also suggested the Centre should scale up free walk-in facilities for COVID vaccination. In this letter, the IMA stated despite following the Centre's test, trace and treat guidelines in letter and spirit, COVID-19 infections have been rising since people are not following COVID-appropriate behaviour.
"At present, we are vaccinating the population above 45 years. In view of the rapid spread of the second wave, we suggest that our vaccination strategy needs to be geared up with immediate effect on war foot," the IMA stated in its letter to the Prime Minister.
Press Release 06.04.2021 pic.twitter.com/oeLDaiIYIO— Indian Medical Association (@IMAIndiaOrg) April 6, 2021
The doctors' body also stated that the second wave of the pandemic is reaching record highs and "vaccination against COVID stands as a single evidence-based resource for us to restrict the cases by raising the personal immune response and pave way for herd immunity to decrease the severity of the disease."
Here is what the IMA suggested to ramp up the immunisation drive:
- All citizens above 18 years should be allowed to receive coronavirus vaccination
- Walk in COVID vaccination should be available for all, free of cost at their nearest possible place
- Private sector family clinics shall also be included actively in the vaccination drive along with private hospitals. Availability of vaccination with all doctors and family physicians will have positive impact on the vaccination drive
- Vaccination certificate shall be made a mandatory certificate for entering in to public places and receiving products under public distribution system
- Since there is an acute spurt of the disease, continuous lockdown should be implemented for non-essential sectors like cinema, cultural and religious events for a limited period of time to break the chain of transmission
As of Tuesday, over 8.31 crore people have been immunised against COVID-19, with more than 43 lakh people getting the life-saving jabs in the last 24 hours. Out of these, over 7.22 crore people received the first dose whereas 1.08 crore people got the second dose of the jab. Highest number of coronavirus vaccinations have taken place in Maharashtra at more than 81.27 lakh.
Maharashtra is followed closely by states like Gujarat (76.89 lakh), Rajasthan (72.99 lakh), Uttar Pradesh (71.98 lakh), West Bengal (65.41 lakh), Karnataka (48.23 lakh), Madhya Pradesh (44.63 lakh), Kerala (40.30 lakh), Odisha (32.87 lakh) and Tamil Nadu (32.05 lakh).
Edited by Mehak Agarwal