People below 60 years of age and over 45 years with co-morbidities would require a certificate from a certified medical practitioner stating that they have a disease that increases risk of infection, making them eligible for the coronavirus vaccine. The medical practitioner could be from the public or the private sector. The protocols are yet to be released by the government.
People in the aforementioned age group, suffering from one or more co-morbidities like heart disorders, chronic pulmonary and kidney diseases, cancer, transplant patients, uncontrolled diabetes, those on immune medications and morbid obesity conditions are eligible for the shots. Officials involved in the vaccine rollout told Times of India that people with disabilities, neurological disorders such as Parkinson's or medical conditions that can increase chances of pneumonia will be validated for vaccination. There are over 27 crore people in the 50 and above age group.
Registration for vaccination is mandatory but there will be options for recipients to produce the medical certificate at centres. So far, there is no clarity on the number of slots that will be available for walk-ins.
Officials told the daily that the decision to expand the drive and allow paid shots in private hospitals was taken after the vaccination drive was stabilised. It was estimated that with vaccination of healthcare and frontline workers still underway and some already likely to have antibodies, the drive can be expanded. A wider pool will make better use of the vaccination capacity.
The government has roped in over 20,000 private hospitals where one can pay and schedule a vaccination. Another 10,000 public health centres will give the shots for free.
People who wish to get inoculated will have the option of registering through web, Aarogya Setu app, common service centres, apart from the Co-WIN app. Beneficiaries would be required to upload an identification document with details such as name, gender and age as well as a photo at the time of registration.