561 beneficiaries inoculated with Covishield jabs in State

561 beneficiaries inoculated with Covishield jabs in State
Neiphiu Rio addressing the launching programme.
Correspondent/ Staff Reporter KOHIMA/DIMAPUR, JAN 16 (NPN) | Publish Date: 1/16/2021 12:21:19 PM IST

Nagaland on Saturday joined the rest of the country in the roll-out of COVID-19 vaccine dubbed as world’s largest vaccination programme covering the entire length and breadth of the country.

According to official figures, around 62% vaccination coverage was recorded on the first day of the phase-I COVID-19 vaccination conducted at nine selected launch sites across the state. As per the health department data, 561 health care workers including doctors, nurses and support staff were inoculated with COVID-19 vaccine (Covishield) across nine districts (Phek 100), Dimapur (82), Kohima (80), Mokokchung (73), Peren (54), Zunheboto (51), Tuensang (48), Mon (43) and Wokha (30). All eleven districts would have more sessions for the remaining health care workers starting January 18, 2020.

The department urged citizens not to spread rumours and fake messages around COVID-19 vaccine. It stated that the Covishield vaccine has undergone all pre-clinical and clinical trials and was safe for use in the general population.

Meanwhile, chief minister Neiphiu Rio along with his cabinet colleague Neiba Kronu and advisors-- Dr. Nicky Kire and Mmhonlumo Kikon took part in the virtual launch of the programme by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.  

In his brief address, Rio lauded all the scientists and people involved in making the vaccine within a year’s time. Acknowledging the healthcare workers, Rio said they deserved to be vaccinated in the first phase. Rio informed that he has directed all the elected members to be in their constituencies to encourage the public to take the first phase of this vaccination without fear or doubt.

According to the chief minister, the Covishield vaccine has 75% efficiency of clinical trials, which indicated good level of immunogenicity and has sufficient anti-bodies against COVID-19.  He informed that a person has to get registered to government portal to receive the vaccine that required two doses and said after 42 days the vaccine efficacy would be known. He appealed the citizens not to feel panicky or deprived as vaccination would be carried out phase wise.

On the prophecy that was widely circulated in social media, Rio said during the visit of church leaders in his residence, he had suggested that senior church leaders to discuss and give the opinion as Nagaland being a majority Christian state, there was possibilities of creating fear among people.

The first COVID-19 beneficiary Dr. Sentimeren Aonok, a consultant in NHAK, said it was a small and painless procedure to save life. He said that citizens should not fear taking the vaccine.

Speaking to media persons after taking the vaccine at NHAK, Dr. Aonok said there were many views and opinions on the vaccination, but assured that it was a “kill vaccine and not live vaccine because of which we can confidently say it is safe”.

To a query, he said the second dose would be administered after 28 days, adding that the actual efficacy would come after 48 days. He said that if it was a live vaccine, then one must be careful but it was a recombinant vaccine and therefore it was safe.

Mission director national health mission (NHM) Dr. Kevichusa Medikhrü in his introductory note said vaccination drive would be conducted in nine sites where about 900 persons would receive the vaccine. Earlier, NBCC general secretary Rev. Dr. Zelhou Keyho pronounced dedicatory prayer before launching the vaccine. 

COVID-19 vaccine rollout in Dimapur: State health and family welfare (H&FW) minister, S Pangnyu Phom launched the COVID-19 vaccination drive at District Hospital Dimapur (DHD) on Saturday with Pathologist, DHD, Dr. Temsu, receiving the first Covid-19 vaccine dose.

Speaking at the launch programme, Phom said that vaccine had undergone all pre-clinical and clinical stages as with any other vaccine development. Health minister also stated that the vaccine has been evaluated to be very safe for use in for general population by Drug Controller General of India. 

“The vaccine has been found to have more than 70 % efficacy from clinical trials with good levels of immunogenicity and scientists have maintained that the vaccine will be efficacious even with new strains,” Phom said, adding that vaccine was already in use in United Kingdom in the general population.

Further, he said that district wise distribution of vaccine doses was as per allocation from Health Ministry. He said that vaccination activities would be carried in identified health units, both government and private sector, in the subsequent days. 

H&FW principal director Dr. Vizole Z Suokhrie, in his address, stated that Covishield vaccine had undergone various tests and trials and it was being purported to be utilized for mass public. He, however, said that the vaccine would not be used for people below 18 years of age. 

Dr. Suokhrie said that like any other vaccine immunization, some beneficiaries might undergo slight headache, fever, restlessness, etc. However, he reiterated that the vaccine has been tested and has been found to have more than 70% efficacy from clinical trials.

Minister of rural development (RD), Metsubo Jamir, in his speech, expressed hope that the Covishield vaccine would effective for “our people and also free us from the shackle of Covid-19 fear, apprehension and misunderstood perception.” 

DC Dimapur, Rajesh Soundararajan, in a brief note, expressed gratitude to doctors, nurses and all health care workers for the sacrifices rendered during the pandemic. 

Delivering a brief report, DPO, UIP/RCH, Dr. Rebecca Y Sema informed that Dimapur had identified 21 session sites for the vaccination drive, with 13 in public and eight in private facilities carrying out 54 sessions over period of five days. 

During the first phase of vaccination, 4894 individuals have been identified to be vaccinated. Out of the total, 100 beneficiaries consist of doctors, nurses and staff of DHD.

Earlier, the programme was chaired by chief medical officer (CMO) Dimapur, Dr. Mereninla Senlem and invocation for the launching programme was offered by chaplain DHD, Rev. Yhunlo Thong.

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