Parts of Maharashtra may run out of Covid vaccines in three days, and the Centre has been requested for more, state Health Minister Rajesh Tope told media today, as cities such as Mumbai warned of rapidly dwindling supplies.
“Vaccine supplies in the state are only good for three days. We also asked the center to give us more vaccines. This is in the state where most infections are reported on a daily basis. Stocks in Mumbai are also only available for three days “Mr. Tope said that he had told Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan of the situation via video conference yesterday.
“Today, 14 lakh doses are available, implying a three-day supply. So, if we vaccinate 5 lakh, people, every day, we need 40 lakh doses per week.”
The minister claimed that he had informed Harsh Vardhan – “Most of our vaccination centers were forced to close due to a shortage of doses. They are returning people due to a shortage of doses. I’ve been requesting you to provide us with the vaccine.”
Maharashtra has been the worst hit by the second wave of Covid infections, with India registering 1.15 lakh cases in 24 hours today.
The city of Mumbai’s civic body, the BMC, has acknowledged that there is a shortfall and that Covid shots are “about to” run out.
“Mumbai’s vaccine supply is about to run out. We are supplying the rest of the doses to government hospitals. We just have around a lakh Covishield doses left. There is a touch of scarcity. Rajesh Tope has addressed this with the Center “Mumbai Mayor Kishori Pednekar said.
“The center needs to send us more stocks as soon as possible otherwise second doses will be difficult to distribute,” she said, advising people to take all measures.
As of this morning, the state had approximately 14 lakh vaccine doses, according to a top Maharashtra health official.
“Most school districts will run out of supplies today or tomorrow. The Centre is aware of the situation, and we have communicated in writing as well “Pradeep Vyas, Maharashtra’s Principal Secretary (Health), told Press Trust of India.
Maharashtra could comfortably administer five lakh vaccine shots in a day if the schedule and availability were clear, he added.
Over the last few days, the state has vaccinated about four lakh people a day.
Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Monday asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to extend the vaccination campaign to include all people above the age of 25, citing the need to protect young people who leave their homes to work.
In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Mr. Thackeray has requested 1.5 crores more vaccine doses to assist Maharashtra in vaccinating all above the age of 45 in six districts, including Mumbai, within three weeks.