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  India   All India  03 Jan 2022  Jabs for 15-18 teens begin today; India's COVID-19 cases jump 21 per cent

Jabs for 15-18 teens begin today; India's COVID-19 cases jump 21 per cent

THE ASIAN AGE. | SANJAY KAW
Published : Jan 3, 2022, 8:29 am IST
Updated : Jan 3, 2022, 8:29 am IST

Supreme Court switch to virtual hearings for two weeks

A health worker shows Covaxin vial during preparation for 15-18 age group vaccination drive, in Patna, Sunday, Jan. 2, 2022. (PTI Photo)
 A health worker shows Covaxin vial during preparation for 15-18 age group vaccination drive, in Patna, Sunday, Jan. 2, 2022. (PTI Photo)

New Delhi: Alarmed over a 21 per cent jump in India’s Covid-19 cases in the past 24 hours, Union health minister Mansukh Mandaviya on Sunday reiterated that the mantra of “Test, Track, Treat, Vaccinate”, and Covid-appropriate behaviour, was the only way to deal with the resurgent virus and to check its further spread.

With 27,553 fresh cases and 284 new fatalities reported in the last 24 hours, India’s Covid-19 tally and death count due to the virus has jumped to 3,48,89,132 and 4,81,770 respectively.

As many as 1,621 Omicron cases have also been detected across 23 states and Union territories, with Maharashtra seeing a maximum of 510 cases, followed by Delhi at 351, Kerala 152 and Gujarat 136. The Omicron cases are less than two per cent of India’s total Covid-19 cases.

On the vaccination front, all children aged between 15 and 18 years will get their first Covid-19 vaccine from Monday. Of around 75 million children in this age group, about 6.35 lakh have registered themselves on the CoWIN app for their first jab.

The health minister has asked the states and UTs to take the necessary measures, including setting up of separate vaccination centres, to avoid mixing-up of Covid-19 vaccines during administration of shots to the 15-18 age group. So far, Covaxin is the only Covid-19 vaccine approved for children.

Mumbai and Delhi are now reporting the most Covid-19 cases among the major metropolises. Mumbai on Sunday reported 8,063 fresh Covid-19 cases, up from 6,347 on Saturday. Delhi also logged 3,194 fresh Covid-19 cases, the highest single-day rise since May 20, and one death. The positivity rate in the city has gone up to 4.59 per cent. The city has 8,397 active Covid-19 cases -- the highest in seven months.

Under the Graded Response Action Plan, approved by the Delhi Disaster Management Authority, if the positivity rate is over five per cent for two consecutive days, a “red” alert can be sounded, which would lead to a total curfew and a halt to most economic activities.

On Friday and Thursday, 1,796 and 1,313 cases were recorded, with a positivity rate of 1.73 per cent and 2.44 per cent respectively. The huge spike in fresh cases in the past few days in Delhi is being recorded amid a significant jump in Omicron cases in the city.

Sunday’s tally of Covid-19 cases in Delhi is 17 per cent higher than the 2,716 infections registered a day before. Delhi had reported 3,231 cases on May 20 last year, with a positivity rate of 5.50 per cent. As many as 233 deaths were recorded on that day.

In view of the sharp rise in Covid-19 cases, the Supreme Court has decided to conduct all hearings in virtual mode for two weeks from Monday. The court administration issued a circular announcing this on Sunday evening. It said an earlier circular prescribing the standard operating procedure (SOP) for physical hearings (hybrid hearings) will remain suspended for the time being.

The Centre will hold a series of webinars from January 5 to 19 on clinical management of Covid-19 cases in collaboration with Delhi’s AIIMS to minimise the mortality rate due to the virus.  Union health secretary Rajesh Bhushan has urged all state-level Centres of Excellence (CoEs) and doctors in public and private district-level Covid-19 health facilities along with CDMOs and in-charges of treatment facilities to attend these webinars.

On vaccinations for the adult population, they are being administered Covaxin, Covishield and Sputnik V. To ensure smooth implementation of the guidelines, Mr Mandaviya held an online interaction with the health ministers and principal secretaries and additional chief secretaries for health of states and UTs. He advised them to ensure the orientation of vaccinators and vaccination teams for the inoculation exercise for children and for identification of dedicated vaccination session sites for them. Mr Mandaviya said: “To avoid the mixing-up of vaccines, separate Covid vaccination centres (CVCs), separate session sites, separate queues (if at the same session where adult vaccination is going on) and separate vaccination teams (if at the same session site) are to be strived for.”

Tags: covid vaccination, teens covid vaccination
Location: India, Delhi, New Delhi