Coronavirus | Tamil Nadu vaccinates more than 28 lakh people

Mega drive takes the total number of doses administered so far in the State above the 4-crore mark.

With a total of 28,91,021 COVID-19 vaccine doses administered in Tamil Nadu through a mega drive on Sunday, the State exceeded the target of 20 lakh doses it had set for the campaign.

The administration of 28.91 lakh doses took the total number of doses administered so far in the State above the 4-crore mark.

While the State had administered 3,74,08,989 doses till Saturday, including 22.9 lakh doses through the private sector, the total went up to 4,03,13,112 doses.

Apart from the 28.91 lakh doses administered through the government-run centres on Sunday, 11,522 doses were administered at private hospitals.

Health Minister Ma. Subramanian, who toured a few southern districts to inspect the drive, said the drive again proved the State’s ability to administer a high number of doses and highlighted the increased awareness among people. “Tamil Nadu is likely to be the only State to administer such a high number of doses on a single day. I think Uttar Pradesh administered more than 20 lakh doses once. However, its population is nearly thrice of ours,” he said in Madurai.

Chief Minister M.K. Stalin congratulated Mr. Subramanian and all the personnel of the Department of Health and Family Welfare on the “Himalayan achievement”. He said the government had made vaccination a mass movement and appealed to all to get themselves vaccinated at the earliest.

Chief Secretary V. Irai Anbu, who inspected the drive at a few places in Chennai along with Greater Chennai Corporation Commissioner Gagandeep Singh Bedi, said the campaign was meant to bring vaccination closer to people, besides creating awareness. Following the tremendous response, the State might organise similar camps once a week to significantly improve the coverage by October.

Around 40,000 special camps were organised across the State. More attention was paid to the nine districts bordering Kerala, which is reporting a high number of cases. The State had supplied 29 lakh doses across all districts. A number of non-governmental organisations partnered with the government. Rotary Club members were deployed at many centres in Chennai for assisting members of the public.

Addressing journalists, J. Radhakrishnan, Principal Secretary, Department of Health and Family Welfare, said the drive demonstrated Tamil Nadu’s ability to administer a high number of doses by tapping into the services of various Departments. Apart from administering five to seven lakh doses a day, Tamil Nadu had shown that it could administer over 25 lakh doses a day through such special drives, he said.

Nilgiris gets full coverage

Mr. Subramanian said the Nilgiris became the first district in Tamil Nadu, and probably in the entire country, to achieve 100% coverage of the first dose. “The district has 5.14 lakh people, aged above 18, who are eligible for vaccination. With the mega drive, the entire population has received the first dose.” The district administered 29,760 doses, according to the data available at 8.45 p.m.

Chennai topped the list with 1.88 lakh doses, followed by Coimbatore with 1.52 lakh doses. Tiruppur (1.2 lakh), Tiruchi (1.1 lakh), Thanjavur (1.2 lakh), Madurai (1.2 lakh) and Tiruvallur (1.01 lakh) were the other districts that administered more than one lakh doses. Another 17 districts administered more than 50,000 doses.

Shortage

Mr. Subramanian acknowledged that there was a shortage at some centres owing to the overwhelming response. “At these centres, we have collected the phone numbers of those who could not get the shot so that they can be followed up tomorrow,” he said.

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