The ‘Tika Utsav’ drive, announced by India’s Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, failed to take off in Vizag as the Covid vaccines are out of stock.
Speaking to Yo!, Andhra Medical College (AMC) Principal, and Visakhapatnam District COVID-19 Special Officer, Dr PV Sudhakar has confirmed that the vaccine reserves in the district have been exhausted. Shedding light on the current situation, the AMC Principal said, “As on Monday morning, we are out of supply. However, we have requested the Centre to look into the matter. We expect fresh vaccine stocks to arrive in the coming days.”
He further added that the shortage of Covid vaccines in Vizag can be overcome by streamlining the distribution process and boosting the manufacturing capacity. When asked about the status of those who received their first shot, Dr PV Sudhakar assured that those individuals need not worry as a few days delay, in taking the second dose, is unlikely to reduce the efficacy of the vaccine.
This is the case with many other districts in Andhra Pradesh with only a few of them having meagre stocks enough for half a day. It may be noted that Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister, YS Jagan Mohan Reddy, recently wrote a letter to the Prime Minister, requesting the latter for 25 lakh vaccine doses for the Tika Utsav drive. Mr Reddy, in his letter, also highlighted the impending vaccine shortage.
Meanwhile, Vizag has been witnessing an increase in the number of coronavirus cases since March 2021. On 11 April, 2021, for the first time in seven months, the COVID-19 new cases tally breached the 400-mark in the district. The death toll stood at 558, with no casualties reported in Vizag between Saturday and Sunday. As many as 2,643 individuals are currently undergoing treatment for the infection. The recoveries in the district reached 1,057, as on 11 April, 2021.