Karnataka buying 1 cr doses to vaccinate 18-44 age group

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Bengaluru, April 28 : Karnataka on Wednesday placed an order to buy 1 crore doses of anti-Covid vaccines to inoculate adults in the 18-44 years age group free from next month.

As the third phase of anti-Covid vaccination drive will roll out from May 1 for the 18-44 years age group, the state government has placed an order to purchase 1 crore doses, according to an official statement here.

Though the order did not mention vaccine names, an official told IANS that the state would buy Covishield from the Pune-based Serum Institute of India and Covaxin from the Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech.

“The vaccination drive for citizens in the 18-44 years age group will begin across the state when the doses are received from both manufacturers,” said the official, without mentioning the commencing date.

Nationwide registration for citizens in the 18-44 years age group on the Union Health Ministry’s Co-Win portal began on Wednesday evening despite glitches.

“Scheduling of slots for vaccination at state-run and private hospitals in the third phase will be posted on the portal on receiving the doses,” said the statement.

According to the state Health Department, Karnataka has over 3.5 crore people in the 18-45 years age group and 1.7 crore people above 45 years of age, in its total population of over 6.5 crore.

Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa said on April 22 the state government would buy 1 crore doses of the anti-viral drug at a cost of Rs 400 crore to inoculate adults in the 18-44 years age group.

Cumulatively, 92,40,078 people, including senior citizens above 60 years of age, those in the 45-59 years age group, healthcare workers and frontline warriors have been vaccinated till date in the state since the drive was launched across India on January 16.