As India is battling the deadly second wave of coronavirus, the Central government has decided to give vaccines to everyone above the age of 18. The third phase of the vaccine rollout will begin on May 1, and with this campaign, the government aims to ensure that the maximum number of Indians are vaccinated against the pandemic.
Manufacturers can sell vaccines in open market
Decisions regarding the third phase of the vaccination rollout were made after the completion of a high-level meeting chaired by prime minister Narendra Modi. Widely considered the world's largest vaccination drive, India aims to provide vaccines for citizens in the shortest possible time.
All stakeholders have been now given the flexibility to customize to local needs. Vaccine manufacturers can give 50 percent of the jabs to the state governments in the nation, and they can also sell the shots in the open market at a pre-declared price. The central government also urged manufacturers to scale up their vaccine production to meet the growing needs.
States can purchase vaccines from manufacturers on their own when the need arises and can give the shots to people above the age of 18.
Second wave of coronavirus wreak havoc
Unlike the first wave of coronavirus, the second wave of coronavirus has emerged as a perfect storm in India, and the recent developments indicate that there is no end in near sight. On April 18, the country witnessed more than 2,70,000 positive cases and over 1,600 deaths. The test positivity in the country has also increased, and especially in states like Kerala, test positivity is continuously recording above 16 percent.
Medical experts believe that the double mutant strain of Covid could be the main reason behind the drastic surge of positive cases in India. The recent election campaigns in states like Kerala, Tamil Nadu, and West Bengal have also contributed to the rising cases in the nation.