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Covid: Odisha halts vaccination drive in 16 districts

The state government took the decision because of a shortage of doses
Only 49,000 people were vaccinated in the state against a target of three lakh on Wednesday.

Our Special Correspondent   |   Bhubaneswar   |   Published 02.07.21, 01:45 AM

The Odisha government on Thursday halted the vaccination drive in 16 districts because of a shortage of doses.

Only 49,000 people were vaccinated in the state against a target of three lakh on Wednesday.


“We have only 19,520 doses of Covishield and 3.24 lakh vials of Covaxin with us,” director, health and family welfare, Bijay Panigrahi, told reporters on Thursday.

Panigrahi said: “The vaccination programme has been stopped in 16 districts. Though, we will receive one lakh Covishield doses today (Thursday), it is not sufficient. We want to expedite the programme before the third wave hits the state.”

The districts where the vaccination programme has been stopped are — Angul, Bolangir, Balasore, Baragarh, Bhadrak, Deogarh, Dhenkanal, Ganjam, Jajpur, Jharsuguda, Kandhamal, Kendrapara, Koraput, Nabarangour, Sonepur and Sundergarh.

Only 114 vaccination sessions were held on Thursday, including 72 in state capital Bhubaneswar.

Odisha has so far vaccinated 1.18 crore people. Covaxin is being administered to people in Bhubaneswar, while Covishield is being given to people in other parts of the state.

For the last 10 days, Odisha has been vaccinating an average of three lakh citizens per day. The state has built the capacity to vaccinate 3.5 lakh people per day.

The number of Covid deaths in the state has touched 4,063, with 45 fresh casualties reported on Thursday.

Of the fresh fatalities, nine were reported from Khurda, five each from Nayagarh and Puri, four each from Ganjam and Keonjhar, three each from Bargarh and Sundargarh districts. Two deaths each were recorded in Angul, Cuttack and Sambalpur and one patient each succumbed to the infection in Balasore, Dhenkanal, Jajpur, Jharsuguda, Mayurbhanj and Nabarangpur, an official said.

Another 3,087 people tested positive for Covid-19 on Thursday, taking the infection tally in the state to 912,887. The state now has 31,231 active cases, while 877,540 patients have recovered from the disease.

Of the new cases, 1,775 were reported from quarantine centres, and the remaining 1,312 detected during contact tracing. Khurda district, of which Bhubaneswar is a part, reported the highest number of fresh cases at 584, followed by Cuttack (462) and Balasore (246).

The state has so far tested over 1.38 crore samples for Covid-19, including 74,000 on Wednesday, and the positivity ratio stands at 6.59 per cent.

Meanwhile, the state government on Wednesday eased Covid-related restrictions in 20 districts where the test positivity rate is below 5 per cent with bus services resuming in a few places on Thursday.

The government had on Wednesday extended the partial lockdown in the state for 15 more days till 5am on July 16.

However, the coastal districts are under active watch of the state government as the number of coronavirus cases is still high. The restrictions are yet to be eased in these districts, particularly in the coastal belt.

Health minister Naba Kishore Das said: “We have requested the Centre to provide vaccines. We are yet to get supplies according to our requirement.”

Odisha has sought six lakh additional doses of Covishield.

The state is expecting a consignment of six lakh vials of the vaccine on Friday, an official said.

Additional reporting from PTI

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