Zoom News : Jan 08, 2022, 12:53 PM
New Delhi: Appointments for the ‘precautionary dose’ of coronavirus disease (Covid-19) vaccine in India will begin from Saturday, according to the announcement made by the central government. The Centre has also said that no new registrations in the CoWin platform would be required for those taking the shot.On Friday, the Union health ministry said that the eligible population – healthcare workers, frontline workers and those above 60 years of age with comorbidities – who have already taken two doses of the vaccine, can directly book an appointment or walk in to any of the Covid-19 vaccination centres.“Schedules will be published on January 8. The online appointment facility will also start by Friday evening. Vaccination with onsite appointment starts on January 10,” news agency ANI reported, quoting a statement from the ministry.Prime Minister Narendra Modi had on December 25 announced the Centre’s decision to administer a ‘precautionary dose’ of the vaccine amid the spread of the Omicron variant, which has led to a surge in Covid-19 cases and concerns around an imminent third wave of infections.The Centre has already notified the states and Union territories that for each recipient, the third dose would be the same shot that was used for the first two doses.On Thursday, Union health secretary Rajesh Bhushan, in a letter to states and UTs, said, “the National Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (NTAGI) has recommended the administration of the homologous vaccine for HCWS, FLWs and elders (more than 60 years of age) with co-morbidities i.e. the same vaccine that has been administered for the previous two doses would be given as the precaution dose to the eligible beneficiaries.”Meanwhile, the country’s vaccination drive administered 1.5 billion (150 crore) doses of the vaccine on Friday, a feat that was hailed by PM Modi and Union health minister Mansukh Mandaviya.