Back to back meetings by PM Modi led to announcement of most liberalised vaccine drives anywhere in the world
New Delhi, Apr 20: Opening up the vaccine drive for all Indians above 18 years of age was one of the most liberalised drives anywhere in the world.
Amidst the second wave of COVID-19 hitting the country hard, Prime Minister Narendra Modi held a series of meetings on Monday to review the battle against the virus. The PM who is observing the Navratra fast also reviewed the election campaign in West Bengal. It was decided that the BJP rallies will have only 500 people and all COVID-19 protocols will be thoroughly followed.
The PM held back to back meetings all through the day on Monday. In the evening, PM Modi met with top doctors from across the country. He later held a meeting with key pharmaceutical companies, where the status of health care infrastructure, oxygen supply and the availability of medicines was reviewed.
PM Modi appreciated the way the pharma industry is working even in such trying conditions.
PM Modi remarked that it is because of the efforts of the pharma industry that today India is identified as 'pharmacy of world'. He said essential medicines were made available to more than 150 countries around the world during the pandemic. The Prime Minister stated that despite all the challenges, the Indian pharma industry has also registered a growth of 18 per cent in exports last year, which shows its potential.
Noting the second wave of the virus and rising number of cases, PM Modi commended the pharma industry for their efforts to increase production of several necessary drugs. He appreciated them for reducing the price of injections like Remdesivir. To keep the supply of medicines and essential medical equipment going smoothly, PM Modi urged the pharma industry to ensure seamless supply chains. PM Modi also extended government's support for facilities like Logistics and Transportation.
He urged the industry to conduct more and more researches on threats which can occur in the future along with Covid. This, he said, would help us take the lead in combating the virus.
Seeking cooperation from the pharma industry, PM Modi assured that government is undertaking reforms for new drugs and regulatory processes.
During the day the PM also called several Chief Ministers to discuss the vaccination programme. An official said that opening up the vaccine drive to all Indians above the age of 18 years is one of the most liberalised drives in the world. Starting May 1, all Indians above the age of 18 are eligible to take the vaccine against COVID-19.
An official note from the government said that the government of India announces a Liberalised and Accelerated Phase 3 Strategy of Covid-19 Vaccination from 1st May
Government has been working hard from over a year to ensure that maximum numbers of Indians are able to get the vaccine in the shortest possible of time, the PM said.
Several important decisions taken in a meeting chaired by Prime Minister. Pricing, Procurement, Eligibility and Administration of vaccines being made flexible in Phase 3 of the World's Largest Vaccination drive.
All stakeholders given flexibility to customise to local needs.
Everyone above the age of 18 to be eligible to get vaccine against Covid-19.
Vaccine manufacturers incentivised to further scale up their production, as well as attract new national and international players.
Vaccine manufacturers empowered to release up to 50% of their supply to State Govts. and in the open market at a pre-declared price.
States empowered to procure additional vaccine doses directly from the manufacturers, as well as open up vaccination to any category of people above the age of 18 for the same.
GoI Vaccination drive to continue as before, providing free vaccination for essential and priority populations as defined earlier i.e HCWs, FLWs and population above 45 years.