The Centre is gearing up for the roll out of COVID-19 vaccine across the country, with four states Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Gujarat, Punjab all set to initiate a dry-run for vaccine administration next week, the Union Health Ministry said on Friday. Each state will plan it in two districts and preferably in different (five) session type settings e.g. district hospital, CHC/PHC, urban site, private health facility, rural outreach etc. This will exercise enable end-to-end mobilisation and testing of COVID-19 vaccination process (except the vaccine) and check the usage of Co-WIN in field environment, the linkages between planning, implementation and reporting mechanisms and identify challenges and guide the way forward prior to actual implementation including improvements that may be required in the envisaged process. This will also provide a hands-on experience to programme managers at various levels.
The two-day activity will include activities from the necessary data entries in Co-WIN to vaccine receipt and allocation to deployment of team members, mock drill of session sites with test beneficiaries to reporting and evening meeting. This will also include testing for cold storage and transportation arrangements for COVID-19 vaccine, management of crowd at the session sites with proper physical distancing.An important focus of the dry run will be on management of any possible adverse events following immunisation (AEFI). In addition, adherence and management of infection control practices at the session site, to prevent disease transmission. The mock drill will include concurrent monitoring and review at the block and district levels, and preparation of feedback to be shared with the State and Union Health Ministry.A detailed checklist has been prepared by the Union health Ministry and shared with the four States to guide them in the dry run.As the vaccine administrators will play an important role in the vaccination process, training of trainers and those who will administer the vaccine has been taken up across various states. To strengthen the capacity of the human resources for the introduction and rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine, detailed training modules have been developed for different categories of vaccine handlers and administrators including medical officers, vaccinators, alternate vaccinators, cold chain handlers, supervisors, data managers, ASHA coordinators and all others involved in the implementation process at different levels.
To facilitate redressal of queries on COVID-19 vaccination and Co-WIN portal related queries, the capacity of the national and state helplines (1075 and 104) has also been strengthened to address queries beyond their routine support.