Shillong, Mar 12: Health Minister A.L Hek today informed the house that 64 percent of total healthcare workers and 60 percent of frontline workers have been vaccinated for COVID-19 till March 11th.
“A total of 19,186 healthcare workers have been vaccinated which forms up to 64 percent of the total healthcare workers. A total of 26,593 frontline workers have been vaccinated so far which forms up to 60% of the entire frontline workers,” he stated.
The Minister was replying to a call attention notice by East Shillong MLA Dr. Ampareen Lyngdoh the news item appearing in the “Times of India” issue dated January 16, 2021 under the caption “27,000 health workers to get COVID vaccine in Meghalaya in Phase I.”
The Congress MLA had also enquired as to if beneficiaries faced any side effects after being administered the vaccine and if the Health Department is ready to begin Phase III.
Hek informed that the vaccination drive for the age group of 60 years and above as well as for the 45 years and above with co-morbidities started from March 1st, 2021.
He added that in order to oversee the preparation of roll out of COVID-19 vaccine, a number of Committees were constituted by the Government.
“These Committees namely State Steering Committee headed by Chief Secretary, State Task Force headed by Principal Secretary, Health & family Welfare, District Task Force headed by Deputy Commissioner, Block Task Force headed by the Block Development Officer met regularly to discuss, review and give guidance on matters related with this Covid-19 vaccination drive,” he said.
The minister added that efforts are also being made to upgrade the cold chain equipments for storage of vaccines.
“Over 311 COVID Vaccination Centres have been opened in the State. It will be expanded up to 450 Centres in the coming days,” he added.
In order to tackle vaccine hesitancy, he stated that the department has empanelled brand ambassadors at State as well as in each District.
“These ambassadors have all been vaccinated so that they will be able to advocate for vaccination by leading the way,” he added. Other measures include digital media campaigns, sensitization workshops, advertising etc.
For registering beneficiaries, he informed that Common Service Centres also known as rainbow centres have been roped in for active registration of citizens who would like to be vaccinated. “
“These centres are present across the State and in remote areas,” he stated.