Nitish takes first jab as Bihar launches free vax campaign

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After frontline health workers and Corona warriors, a vaccination drive for those aged above 60 and those above 45 with co-morbidities began in Bihar on Monday.

The first person to receive the vaccination at the Indira Gandhi Institute of Medical Science (IGIMS) in Patna on Monday afternoon was Chief Minister Nitish Kumar himself.

Health minister Mangal Pandey and Pratyay Amrit, principal health secretary of Bihar government were present on the occasion.

CM Nitish Kumar, after taking the vaccine, said: “I appeal to the people of Bihar to take the Corona vaccine especially senior citizens above 60 years of age. I also appeal to journalists to take the corona vaccine. The job of journalists is very challenging and hence they should take the vaccine. I have directed the concerned officials to start the process of vaccination to journalists.”

Kumar, during the 2020 assembly election campaign, had promised vaccination to the people of Bihar free of cost.

“We had promised a free corona vaccine to everybody and I have already given directions to officials during the cabinet meeting for the same,” Kumar said.

“The central government has a fixed charge not more than Rs 250 if any person goes to a private hospital. In Bihar, the state government will bear the expense of vaccines in private hospitals,” Kumar said.

The vaccination in government hospitals is free of cost across the country.

“The state government has selected 1600 health centres for vaccination across the state and 50 of them are private hospitals. The process of dispatching the vaccines to these centres are started,” said Pratyay Amrit, Bihar’s principal health secretary.

He further said that the vaccination will start in 700 centres on Monday. After March 15, vaccines will be available from 300 more centres. From March 16 to 31, 200 more centres will have the facilities. From April 1 to April 15, an additional 300 centres will have the facility and from April 16 to April 30, vaccines will be available in the remaining 100 centres.

–IANS

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