Bikaner in Rajasthan is set to become the first city in the country to launch a door-to-door Covid vaccination drive.
The exercise, scheduled to start on Monday, will be for people in the 45 + age group.
Two ambulances and three mobile teams are ready to take the jabs to the doorsteps and the district administration has started a helpline with a WhatsApp number for people to register for the shots with their names and address.
Once a minimum of 10 people register, the vaccine van will leave for their homes. The requirement of a minimum of 10 registrations before the mobile van rolls out is to minimise wastage as one vial of vaccine can be used to give the jab to 10 people.
While the vaccine van will go from one address to the next after administering the shot, a medical team will stay with the person for observation.
Bikaner city, about 340 km from state capital Jaipur, has 16 urban primary health centres and doctors at these centres will be informed about who in their area is getting the jabs so that they too can monitor them for any adverse effects.
Namit Mehta, Collector of Bikaner, said the city has a population of over 7 lakh as per the 2011 Census and about 60-65 per cent of its population has been vaccinated so far.
"With the experts predicting a third wave of Covid infections, we are targeting 75 per cent vaccination for the above 45 years category . There are several constraints for this age group in going to the vaccination centres, especially for the elderly and the women. So this initiative of vaccinating people at their homes should find many takers," said Mr Mehta.
Over 3,69,000 people have been vaccinated in Bikaner so far. The district today reported 28 new Covid cases over the past 24 hours. The district has reported 40,118 cases so far and 527 deaths. It currently has 453 active cases.
Rajasthan has reported 368 cases and 16 deaths over the past 24 hours and currently has 8,400 active cases.