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Mrunal Manmay Dash

Citing a Central government order that made provisions of waiting area and observation room mandatory for vaccination, the Odisha government on Wednesday directed for discontinuation of the off-site services running at several cities with immediate effect.

In a letter issued to all the district Collectors and Municipal Commissioners, the Odisha Health Department said, “As per the COVID-19 Operational guidelines of Govt. of India, MoHFW, drive-in or door-step COVID-19 vaccination is not permitted. The guideline clearly says that vaccination sessions shall be conducted in places with adequate space for waiting area, vaccination room and observation room and has adequate facility to manage AEFI.”

“As per guideline, the beneficiaries have to be observed for at least 30 minutes after vaccination for AEFI (if any). In drive-in / door step strategies, it will be difficult to manage AEFI if it occurs, and there is also high likelihood of vaccine wastage,” read the letter.

In this backdrop, the department has asked them to refrain from such strategies and insisted on conducting sessions only in suitable CVCs (COVID Vaccination Centres) with adequate space by following the COVID-19 operational guidelines.

It is worthwhile to mention here that several Municipal Corporations including Berhampur, Rourkela and Cuttack have started vaccinating senior citizens and differently able people at their doorstep for convenience.

While, the Cuttack Municipal Cororation (CMC) begun the drive on Wednesday, both Berhampur and Rourkela civic bodies launched doorstep vaccination drives on Monday and Tuesday respectively.

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