100% 1st dose administered, now, Mumbai eyes full vaccination | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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100% 1st dose administered, now, Mumbai eyes full vaccination

ByJyoti Shelar
Nov 14, 2021 11:09 AM IST

As the city moves to increase its first dose coverage beyond 100% and achieve the second dose target, new micro strategies are being designed

Three hundred and one days after the nationwide Covid-19 vaccination programme was rolled out on January 16, Mumbai achieved 100% first dose coverage on Saturday, November 13. By 10pm Saturday, the city had overshot its target to vaccinate the eligible adult population of 9,236,546 with at least one dose by 0.18% and administered 9,253,647 first doses and 6,033,148 double doses, according to the Central government’s CoWin dashboard, taking the city’s full vaccination coverage to 65%.

Absolute coverage may therefore be a few more days away, experts said, and a small percentage of the population could still choose to remain unvaccinated due to personal choice, hesitancy or other reasons. (HT Photo/Representative use)
Absolute coverage may therefore be a few more days away, experts said, and a small percentage of the population could still choose to remain unvaccinated due to personal choice, hesitancy or other reasons. (HT Photo/Representative use)

To be sure, Mumbai may have statistically achieved the milestone of 100% first dose coverage, but the city will have to administer many more doses to truly cover its entire adult population. The reason: An estimated 10-20% people who have got the Covid-19 vaccine in Mumbai are likely to be from other parts of the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) or the rest of Maharashtra.

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“We are definitely accounting for this slight mismatch. Therefore, our vaccination drive will continue aggressively,” said Mumbai’s executive health officer Dr Mangala Gomare. “We will have to go much beyond 100%,” she added.

Absolute coverage may therefore be a few more days away, experts said, and a small percentage of the population could still choose to remain unvaccinated due to personal choice, hesitancy or other reasons. “No other district in the country has managed to reach the 100% target in such a short time,” said Mumbai’s additional municipal commissioner Suresh Kakani. “It has been a collective effort. We achieved it because of the sincere contribution of all municipal workers, private hospitals, NGOs and people on the ground.”

Mumbai reached the 1 million doses (both doses included) mark on March 25. The 9 million doses landmark was attained on August 24. On September 4, Mumbai became the first district in India to administer 10 million doses, and on November 10, it crossed the 15 million mark. As of Saturday, Mumbai had administered 15,286,627 combined doses.

According to Kakani, decentralising vaccination centres played a crucial role in achieving the target. As the city moves to increase its first dose coverage beyond 100% and achieve the second dose target, new micro strategies are being designed.

Infectious disease expert and member of Maharashtra’s Covid-19 task force Dr Om Srivastava said that 100% first dose coverage is “great news.” “It means the city is better protected than earlier. But we cannot let our guard down. The virus is unpredictable, and there are countries that are seeing large number of cases even now. France has announced it is experiencing a fifth wave,” he said.

Also Read | Mumbai civic body official: Initial phase and last mile are the most challenging

On Friday, World Health Organisation (WHO) chief Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said that Covid-19 cases were not only surging in eastern European countries with lower vaccination rates, but also in western Europe, which is among the world’s highest vaccinated geographies.

Vaccination in Mumbai first began on January 16 along with the rest of the country for healthcare workers, which was expanded on February 5 to include frontline workers; on March 1 for citizens above 60 years of age; on April 1 for citizens in 45-59 years age group; and on May 1 for all adult citizens. Vaccination for lactating mothers began on May 26, and for pregnant women, it began from July 14.

On day one, Mumbai had just 10 vaccinations centres, but that number has grown to 462, including public and private vaccination centres, with a combined capacity of administering over 123,000 doses per day.

Dr Naveen Thacker, vaccination expert and a former civil society organisation representative to GAVI, the vaccine alliance, said, “Mumbai has shown 100% vaccination is achievable. Other districts in the country should follow suit. This should be a barrier between the city and the anticipated third wave,” he said.

So far this month, in Maharashtra, Covid numbers seem to be declining gradually. The first 13 days of November saw a 61.14% drop in cases compared to the first 13 days of October. Similarly, while on October 13, active cases in the state totalled 29,555, it had dropped by 58.65% to 12,219 by November 13. The corresponding active cases for Mumbai were 5,997 and 3,577, a drop of 40.65%.

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