3rd phase of Vax drive to cover those above 50, beginning March: Harsh Vardhan

New Delhi, Feb 5 : The most vulnerable age group of people in the country, those aged above 50 will get the first jab in March second week onwards, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan informed Parliament on Friday.

The Health Minister said since the drive for the second phase to cover over 2 crore frontline workers is under progress, it is difficult to announce any fixed date right now but it is expected that the third phase of the vaccination drive will start in the second, third or fourth week of March.

Replying to a question during Question Hour session of Lok Sabha, the Minister made the announcement saying "The third phase drive will cover the most vulnerable people over the age of 50".

Vardhan said that the first phase of the world's biggest vaccination drive, which was rolled out on January 16 by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in India, had aimed to inoculate around 1 crore healthcare workers and the second phase targeted 2 crore frontline workers.

Currently, India is inoculating indigenously made Covid-19 vaccines Covishield and Covaxin.

The Minister further said that seven more vaccines are under process and India has so far administered vaccines to 5 million people across the country.

Vardhan also mentioned that 22 countries including the United Arab Emirates, Bangladesh, Bhutan and Afghanistan have so far requested India to supply Covid-19 vaccines and 15 of them have been provided 161 lakh doses.



Source: IANS