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Centre finalises vaccine transport module ahead of second nationwide dry run – coronavirus crisis


NBC News

The central government has drawn up a detailed draft for the air transportation of coronavirus (Covid-19) vaccines and their movement across different parts of India a day before the second nationwide vaccine dry run scheduled on January 8. The first dry run took place on January 2 at 286 session sites across 125 districts.

“For vaccine transportation across the country, a common draft has been made. It will shortly be shared with stakeholders. The transportation of vaccines is likely to begin by today or tomorrow,” government sources told news agency ANI.

They pointed out that Pune had been chosen as the central hub for Covid-19 vaccine distribution and added that passenger aircraft will be permitted to transport doses in the belly of the carrier.

The Centre has formed mini-hubs across the country for the transportation of the vaccine and a total of 41 destinations (airports) have been finalised for their delivery, the sources said.

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For North India, Delhi and Karnal will be the mini-hubs. While Kolkata and Guwahati have been chosen as mini-hubs for the eastern part of the country and Chennai and Hyderabad are the designated points for the southern region, sources in the aviation ministry told ANI.

Meanwhile, Union health minister Dr Harsh Vardhan on Thursday held a meeting with the health ministers of all states and Union territories (UTs) to guide them on the conduction of the vaccine dry run tomorrow. Vardhan urged the state authorities to be prepared and stop any misinformation campaigns.

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Taking to Twitter, the health minister wrote that nearly 170,000 vaccinators and 300,000 vaccination team members have been trained to administer the doses. “In a massive country-wide exercise, another Mock Drill on Covid-19 Vaccine administration to be conducted in all States & UTs on January 8, 2021. Around 1.7 lakh vaccinators & 3 lakh vaccination team members trained in vaccine administration,” he tweeted.

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India on Tuesday registered 20,346 fresh coronavirus cases and 222 related deaths which pushed the overall tally and death toll to 10,395,278 and 150,336 respectively, as per the health ministry’s update at 8am. The active cases continued to remain below the 300,000-mark while the recoveries crossed 10 million and constituted 96.36 per cent of the total caseload.

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