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With Covishield low on stock, Chennai corporation’s health centres switch to Covaxin

March 19, 2021 | 11:26 IST | Editorial |

Chennai corporation’ urban community health centres and primary health centres offering the Covid vaccine said that only Covaxin was available as of Thursday. Earlier, the healthcare centres had been administering Covishield.

A UCHC staff in Perungudi said that Covishield was low on stock and they had reserved the available doses for those who would return for their second doses.

“Until yesterday, we were administering Covishield. It is only today that we have switched to Covaxin,” the staff said.

Similarly, primary healthcare centres including those in Mandaveli and Kilpauk also said that only Covaxin was currently available.

While some took time to make an informed decision since they had come to get Covishield specifically, a few others said that they were open to either.

Senior corporation officials said that they have sufficient stock of both the vaccines for the time being.

“Since the (vaccination) programme is a good success in Chennai, vaccine stock is mobilised from other districts to Chennai,” said a senior official.

“The availability of Covaxin vis a vis Covidshield could be specific to Primary Healthcare Centres. We will address it,” the official added.

The city corporation is vaccinating around 25,000 people on a daily basis at present and aims to reach 50,000 a day by the end of March.

Chennai Corporation Commissioner G Prakash, who met reporters, on Thursday, appealed to city residents over the age of 60 and those above 45 with comorbidities, to take the vaccine in a PHC nearest to them.

However, so far only four lakh residents have taken the vaccine. “At least 40 lakh people should be vaccinated to be on the safe side. For that it will take 2-3 months,” Prakash said, adding that there were 20 lakh people over the age of 45.