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An Insight Into The Vaccination Drive in Gujarat | Benefits, and Challenges

Updated: Aug 25, 2023

With the epidemic of COVID-19, the deadliest pandemic of the decade, it is more necessary than ever to keep your environments safe and disinfected to remain protected and preserve hygiene. Along with the pandemic’s second wave invading many parts of the world, people are in terror of how helpful the vaccination will be. Governments all over the world are constantly working towards the better functioning of the covid vaccination drive.

The Gujarat government has been successful in the vaccination of more than 6 lakhs of frontline workers in the first phase, and second phases. Although in the third phase the state has covered nearly 30 districts and seven municipal regions.

Following the announcement of the official Covid-19 vaccine, it would be interesting to see how different countries negotiate about how to distribute the vaccine from the most vulnerable to the least vulnerable. Overall, the only thing to remember is that living a healthy, happy, and sanitized life is currently our only choice.

What do we know about the covid vaccines developed in India?

India vowed to develop the best cure for the deadly virus as soon as possible and living up to the expectations we have been successful in working towards the eradication of the virus with its homegrown vaccine “COVAXIN” which has an efficiency rate of around 80 percent as per the preliminary data from its three trial phases. COVAXIN was devised by Hyderabad-based pharmaceuticals “Bharat Biotech''. The vaccine's maker, Bharat Biotech, described the new results as "a significant breakthrough in vaccine research, for medicine, and in our war against coronavirus."

Though the third phase of the study was already underway, India's regulators gave the vaccine emergency approval in January, prompting skepticism and concerns from experts. The developers claim to have a surplus of 20 million doses of COVAXIN and expect to manufacture nearly 700 million doses by the end of the year at its four centers in two cities.

The second vaccine called “COVIDSHIELD” developed by the Serum Institute of India, the world's biggest vaccine producer is manufacturing the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine locally. It claims to be able to manufacture more than 50 million doses every month. When a patient gets the vaccine, it activates the immune system to create antibodies and trains it to combat any coronavirus attack.

The Benefits

Take a look at the major benefits of the vaccination drive in the state:

· Free of cost in government centers

People who are worried about the cost of the covid vaccination need to know that the vaccination will be free of cost if you are getting yourself vaccinated from the government-registered hospitals and other centers. However, it would be costing 250 INR for people opting to go to private hospitals. This is a well-to-do cost and can easily be afforded by the people.

· Healthcare workers first

The government has started a policy when the vaccination first came into existence, more than one crore healthcare workers are to be vaccinated in the first phase. Right after the healthcare staff, other frontline soldiers, and local workers are vaccinated in step 1 of the coronavirus vaccination campaign. Around two crore frontline employees involved in COVID-19 containment, monitoring, and related operations, such as state and central police departments, security forces, home guard, emergency management and civil defense organizations, jail officers, local personnel, and revenue officials, will receive the COVID vaccine.

· Credibility

The most important benefit of the vaccination drive is that people need to trust the process as the vaccine is developed in our country and hence it is homegrown. This adds to the credibility of the vaccine to be true to its purpose. We are not giving people vaccination doses that have been brought from other countries, rather all the vaccines are developed in the country with full support and the utmost care from the government and the medical experts.

The Challenges

Let's look at the major challenges that we are or might be facing while working to vaccinate the people in the state:

· Logistical Challenges

A major challenge to cover the vaccination drive in the state might be the logistics, how well we handle the transportation of millions of vaccine doses to all the areas of Gujarat. The main pointer here is that due to the vaccination drive, the normal working of the health workers will also be affected severely. Although the priority of previous dry runs has been on vaccination site logistics and the treatment of beneficiaries that arrive at those locations, the vaccine's overall logistics do need to be fine-tuned.

· A large population

This is a crystal clear challenge that our country has to face every time something comes up. A large population adds to our disadvantage during the massive covid vaccination drive. More than 136 crores of the population is not easy to handle as it may sound, if we talk about the state of Gujarat, it was estimated at around 6.3 crores in 2013. It may have a good increase since then and therefore a large population will be a major challenge in the vaccination scenario.

· Cold storage

The covidshield vaccination needs to be stored in a cold storage facility and therefore it needs refrigeration all the time. So a cold storage facility becomes a necessity for its storage and we do not have large refrigeration equipment in the state. As per a leading newspaper, we have only 50 percent of resources in the country and 40 percent out of it are located only in the major six states. This could create serious concerns in the state of Gujarat.

· Online registration

A notice released by the government has been made clear that the covid vaccinations will be available only to the persons who will register online on the designated official website. Only the pre applicants will get the benefits of the vaccine, this is a concern in a way that most of the people in our country do not have access to the internet. The same goes for the state of Gujarat, due to this rule many people will face the disadvantage of not getting the vaccination on time.

· Hesitation in people

Although many scientists and experts in the medical field have already stated that vaccination is the best way to be immune to the attack of the deadly virus, still many people in the country are not convinced by the fact. The Gujarat natives are also facing the same problem of trusting the effect of the vaccination, this will be imposed as a great problem that is to be faced by the government and the healthcare workers as convincing people for such a large commitment can be a difficult task.

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