Delhi to give free Covid shot to 18 +: Kejriwal
Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Monday said Delhi will provide free of cost vaccination to everyone above 18 years of age.
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He said Covid-19 has begun to affect also those below 18 years of age. If these vaccines are effective for their age group, or any special vaccines can be manufactured for children, the Central government should allow the administration of vaccines to children below 18 years.
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He said the Delhi government has approved the purchase of 1.34 crore vaccines.
Kejriwal said vaccine price should not be different for the Center and State Governments and appealed to vaccine manufacturers to bring down the price to Rs 150/dose.
He also appealed to the Central government to cap the price of vaccines if needed.
He visited Radha Soami Satsang Beas wherein the Delhi government is starting a 150 oxygen bed facility there which go will go up to 500 beds in the next few days and eventually 2,000 oxygen facility.
Kejriwal in a Press conference today said: “The rapid spread of coronavirus cases is worrying many people. The only solution in sight seems to be the vaccine and ensuring a swift administration campaign for the same. In light of this, the Delhi government has decided to administer the vaccine free of cost to all 18+ residents of Delhi.
“It will be our effort to carry this out swiftly and efficiently. Today we gave the go-ahead for the purchase of 1.34 crore vaccines for the state of Delhi.”
He said: “Vaccine is emerging as a solution to this pandemic. Those who have been administered the vaccine are either not contracting the virus or contracting only mild forms of it. They can recover at home and do not have to be admitted to the hospital, even when they require hospitalisation their recovery is easy and swift. If we move with this observation then successful vaccination of everyone will mean that the severity of the pandemic will end.
“Coronavirus will become like any other disease – manageable and with success rates of recovery. The United Kingdom was facing a similar situation as India is today, one of the main factors behind their ability to overcome the wave was a robust vaccination drive. Experts agree that vaccination drives will aid in defeating the virus.”
Kejriwal said: “Different vaccine manufacturers have priced the vaccine at 400/- and 600/- rupees for State governments and at 150/- rupees for the central government. I believe that the price should be the same for everyone. I was watching the interview of one of the manufacturers who told the said interviewer that vaccination companies are profiting even at the 150/- rate at which they are providing the vaccine to the central government. If that is the case, then at 400/- and 600/- their profit margins must be huge.
“I believe that now is not the time to look for profits, now is the time to come together as people and help humanity. At a time when central and state governments are capping the rate at which medicines and other facilities should be made available to people, vaccines should also be moderately priced. It is my appeal to the manufacturers that they, on their own, bring the price to 150/- for everyone.
“There is a lifetime to make a profit, this is the time to aid people. It is also my appeal to the Central government, if need be, please cap the rate of the vaccine and ensure it is made available at standardised rates to everyone.”
He said: “As of now, we have received the notification to administer the vaccine to 18 and above residents. However, the disease has begun to affect also those below 18 years of age. If these vaccines are effective for their age group, we will be administering vaccines to them. If however, special vaccines are required for children i.e. those below the age of 18, I hope they are manufactured soon and can be swiftly administered to the children of the country, for their safety.”