As the number of elderly people being vaccinated against COVID-19 remains low in Tamil Nadu, the State Health department workers, along with Greater Chennai Corporation volunteers have commenced a door-to-door drive to bring them to vaccination centres.
As per a study report by the Directorate of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, vaccine hesitancy was highest among those above 60 years of age (27.6 per cent). Another survey by the Observer Research Foundation also found that Tamil Nadu has a low coverage of elderly people as the distribution of vaccines among 60 years and older was only about 559 per 1,000 population in the State.
“The vaccine hesitancy was witnessed initially in the State, but people have now started getting vaccinated voluntarily. However, in the elderly, there can be issues of fear to vaccinate due to comorbidities, trouble in travelling to the vaccination centre and misconceptions surrounding vaccination. The door-to-door vaccination will help them in making them aware of the vaccination and its benefits,” said public health expert Dr K Kolandaisamy.
The officials with the state health department said the volunteers are trying to ensure that more elderly people come forward for vaccination.
“When there is an adequate number of vaccines, volunteers are trying to eradicate vaccine hesitancy among the elderly people. As more people are getting vaccinated, we are sure that vaccine hesitancy can be brought down,” said a senior official from the state health department.