Poor response to booster shots at private vaccination centres

The precautionary booster dose vaccination has begun at private vaccination centres across the State, but only about 9,000 booster doses including the vaccination at government vaccination centres have been administered since it started on 10 April.
Poor response to booster shots at private vaccination centres
Representative image

Chennai: The paid private vaccination centres are well stocked with both vaccines, but the response has been lukewarm. The state health department officials say that the vaccination numbers are low due to low numbers of COVID-19.

“The cases of COVID-19 have declined. So, people are not as anxious over getting the precautionary booster dose. People who are travelling abroad for various purposes and if the country they are travelling to mandates booster dose vaccination, they are getting vaccinated. We would encourage younger adults with comorbidities to get vaccinated,” said a medical services officer from a private hospital in Alwarpet.

Authorities of a hospital in Nungambakkam say that the withdrawal of notifications of mandatory vaccination in public places has made people to choose to not get vaccinated.

“The public spaces have opened up and though it is voluntary to get vaccinated with the precautionary booster dose, the sudden rise in numbers of cases in other States should be noted. Vaccination is the only weapon even if there is another variant of the virus,” said another infectious diseases expert from a private vaccination centre in Nungambakkam.

Meanwhile, the state health department officials say that the elderly, individuals with comorbidities, frontline workers and healthcare workers are being vaccinated as they have a higher risk of getting infected.

“People have the general attitude that the pandemic is over, as cases have dropped. The Co-WIN portal is controlled by the Union Government. So, we don’t have access to the exact number of precautionary booster doses and vaccines that have been administered so far, but the response has not been great, “ said Dr Vinay Kumar, State Immunisation Officer, Directorate of Public Health and Preventive Medicine.

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