India has started administering the booster doses against COVID-19 on the 10th January. This phase of the vaccination programme includes the health workers, the front line warriors and senior citizens.
PM Modi had announced the inoculation of a precautionary dose on December 25 last year amid the surge of Omicron variant. The decision will surely help increase the safety net for those who are at higher risk.
The health ministry states the CoWIN app will be sending notifications to the eligible candidates. In addition to that eligible people can directly go to the centre to have a jab too.
More than 9 lakh precautionary doses were administered on the very first day. There are nearly one crore health workers and two crore front line warriors who need the third dose.
Almost 2.75 core jabs are needed under the precautionary dose plan. Whereas, we have not completed our two doses mark for the adult population. Introducing the third dose is definitely adding up in the delay of vaccination.
Guidelines and Objectives For Booster Doses:
According to the health ministry, there is no need to register before taking the precautionary dose.
However, the ministry has released some guidelines:
- Senior citizens with diseases like diabetes, Hypertension and other chronic ailments can take the shot.
- For non comorbid senior citizens, the recommendation of dose is to be given by the physician.
- Precautionary dose to be administered the same as the last dose of vaccine.
- Minimum gap between the last dose and precautionary dose should be atleast nine months.
- Only Covishield and Covaxin users can get the booster dose.
The government has not released any guidelines for those who were given Sputnik V earlier. They have to wait a little longer before they can take the precautionary dose. Over one crore people have received the notification for the dose till now via CoWIN app.
The objective to introduce the precautionary dose is to protect and strengthen the immunity of people under high-risk categories. The variant Omicron has also increased a load of COVID cases as seen recently and the decision to give booster doses was taken to fight the Omicron variant.
Many doctors, staff, nurses, junior doctors, police officials are reportedly getting re-infected even though they have taken both shots of the vaccine. According to health experts, health workers and frontline warriors are always at high risk as they come in contact with multiple sources. The booster dose will benefit in providing extra immunity to them.