New Delhi, Jan 21, 2021: Prime Minister Narendra Modi and chief ministers are likely to get vaccinated against Covid-19 in the second round, sources said. The PM said in the CMs’ meet that the turn of other politicians, who are above 50, will come in next phase.
After healthcare and frontline workers such as police, armed forces and municipal workers, the third category to be vaccinated is likely to be people over the age of 50, followed by those who are below 50 but suffer from co-morbidities.
A tentative prioritisation for vaccination was discussed at the meeting held between PM Modi and the state chief ministers on November 24 and has been communicated to state governments, said people familiar with the development, Economic Times reported.
A 50-year plus grouping appears to be an expansion of the earlier category that was under discussion. So far, the government officials had been saying this category would comprise ’senior citizens’ and the ’elderly’, and it was expected that this group would consist of people over the age of 65.
"In India, co-morbidities like hypertension, diabetes and coronary heart diseases occur much earlier than in western populations. So, prioritising the 50 plus population is the right approach," Public Health Foundation of India president K Srinath Reddy was quoted as saying.
The Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) had earlier this month approved Oxford Covid-19 vaccine Covishield, manufactured by the Serum Institute, and indigenously developed Covaxin of Bharat Biotech for restricted emergency use in the country, paving the way for a massive inoculation drive. This is the world’s largest vaccination programme covering the entire length and breadth of the country.