New Delhi, May 13, 2022: The Centre on Thursday relaxed norms for Covid-19 vaccine precaution dose, allowing citizens travelling overseas to get the jab before the nine-month period as per regulations laid down by the governments of the destination country. Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya in an announcement said the facilities will be made available on the CoWIN website soon.
“Indian citizens & students travelling overseas can now take the precaution dose as required by the guidelines of the destination country. This new facility will be available soon on the CoWIN portal," he said in a tweet.
The decision to relax the norms about the precaution dose for overseas travellers by the Health Ministry was based on recommendations by the National Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (NTAGI).
Indian citizens & students travelling overseas can now take the precaution dose as required by the guidelines of the destination country.— Dr Mansukh Mandaviya (@mansukhmandviya) May 12, 2022
This new facility will be available soon on the CoWIN portal.
Last week, the advisory panel had recommended that those who need to travel overseas can take the precaution dose of Covid vaccine as required by the country they are travelling to before the mandatory nine-month gap.
As per current guidelines, all those above 18 years of age and having completed nine months after the second dose are eligible for precaution shots.
The announcement comes as the ministry had received several representations seeking the precaution dose for those who have to travel abroad for employment, business commitments, admission to foreign educational institutes, participating in sports events, and bilateral and multilateral meetings as part of India’s official delegation.
“The issue was discussed in a meeting of NTAGI held last week after which it recommended that those who need to travel overseas can take the booster shot, before the stipulated nine-month waiting period, as per the booster guidelines of the country they are travelling to," a source told PTI. India began administering precaution doses of Covid vaccines to healthcare and frontline workers and those aged 60 and above with comorbidities from January 10 this year.
The comorbidity clause was removed in March making all people aged above 60 eligible for the precaution dose of Covid vaccine. On April 10, India began administering precaution doses of Covid-19 vaccines to all aged above 18 years at private vaccination centres.