The Odisha government on Tuesday said healthcare workers and frontline workers refusing to take the Covid-19 vaccine will cease to enjoy the privileges granted by the government in case of Covid-19 infection.
They will not get free treatment, financial and other benefits in case of death, said additional chief secretary (Health) P.K. Mohapatra in a letter to district collectors and municipal corporation commissioners.
“It is hereby directed that all healthcare workers and frontline workers, who have been registered for vaccination but are now wilfully refusing the same without any genuine grounds (of a contra-indication condition) will henceforth cease to enjoy the privileges granted by the government in case of Covid infection, namely free treatment, period of isolation/treatment being counted as duty, financial and other benefits in case of death etc,” said Mohapatra.
Notably, over 85 per cent healthcare workers have been vaccinated and the vaccination of frontline workers is ongoing. Odisha is in third position in Covid-19 vaccination at the national level.
“However, it has come to notice that despite repeated instructions and opportunities given, few registered healthcare workers and frontline workers have not taken the first dose of Covid-19 vaccination,” said Mohapatra.
“If we don’t fully utilise the vaccines allotted to us, we will be missing out on a critical opportunity to fight the pandemic. Further, those healthcare workers and frontline workers who remained unvaccinated put both their community and workplaces at risk of Covid transmission,” he added.
Mohapatra requested the district collectors to take steps to ensure that the workers take the opportunity to take the vaccine with the timeline given by the Union Health Ministry.