Taking note of the low vaccination numbers in the state, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Friday asked all private and government hospitals and health facilities to offer hassle-free vaccination services for at least 8 hours daily, seven days a week, till March 31.
There should be no requirement of a separate certificate if an eligible over 45 year-old person brings the medical record regarding co-morbidities, he said.
The directions came during the COVID review meeting chaired by the Chief Minister, who pointed out with concern that of the 1291 registered private facilities, 891 have reportedly not administered a single dose.
An official release said the Chief Minister asked the district administration to come down strictly on such hospitals, stressing that private hospitals need to join the government battle against COVID-19 for the survival of the state and its people.
Rates to take the vaccine in private healthcare institutions must be publicised and overcharging should not be permitted, he told the Health Department.
He asked all elected and local leaders to make efforts to reach out to the public and address vaccination hesitancy.
"Community participation through Lok Sanjhedari should also be reorgsed and mobilised to address vaccination hesitancy and COVID appropriate behaviour," he said.
The Chief Minister said the Covid incidence in Punjab has remained relatively low over the last one year, and the state has consistently remained at the 18th position among all states in India in terms of the no. of Covid cases. Though the death rate has been a matter of concern but at 206 deaths per million population, Punjab compares well against Delhi at 542 and Maharashtra at 431, he added.
However, it was a matter of concern, said the Chief Minister, that after bringing the problem under control by the end of the last year, the state is again seeing a surge for the last one month.
From a low of around 200 cases daily and deaths in single digits, Punjab has gone to around 2000 cases per day, and the deaths are also increasing, he noted.
"We have to be prepared for this second surge," he said noting that the 1918 Spsh flu had four spikes. "We have to be prepared for a long battle," he added.
The Chief Minister assured, however, that his government was fully prepared to deal with the second wave.
( With inputs from ANI )
Disclaimer: This post has been auto-published from an agency feed without any modifications to the text and has not been reviewed by an editor