Union Health Ministry tells lax private vaccination centres to speed up

By Express News Service
NEW DELHI:  The health ministry on Wednesday expressed concern over the slow pace of procurement and administration of vaccines by private vaccination centres. Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan chaired a high-level meeting with health secretaries and senior immunisation officials of 15 states and UTs, during which areas of concern were highlighted, including delay in ordering and procurement of doses.

Bhushan pointed out that many private vaccination centres (PCVCs) have not placed any order for the earmarked quantum of vaccines. “States were advised to review the status on a daily basis and ensure that indents for the earmarked quantum are quickly placed with the private vaccine manufacturers,” the ministry said.

“In some cases, no payment has been made. State governments and the PCVCs were advised to ensure that the gap between the indented quantity and payment towards reduces to zero,” it said.

States and UTs which participated in the meeting were Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Odisha, Telangana, Arunachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Gujarat, West Bengal, Delhi, Punjab and Haryana. Nodal representatives from vaccine manufacturers Bharat Biotech and Serum Institute of India were also present.

In some states, the quantity of vaccines paid for has not been physically lifted by the states/PCVCs. In some states, wherever vaccine doses have been lifted by PCVCs, the actual administration of vaccines is seen to be less than the vaccine quantity lifted. Bhushan asked for the gaps to be fixed.