No Immediate Change in Gap Between Two Covishield Vaccine Doses, Says Centre

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The US State Dept Coordinator for COVID19 Response and Health Security, Gayle E Smith told news agency ANI that India will receive additional vaccines from America. “With India, we’re part of something called QUAD via which we’re making an investment to increased production capacity in India. India will be receiving additional vaccines from the US,” she said.

Meanwhile, as the Centre’s price cap for vaccines has made operation unviable, Delhi’s first drive-through COVID-19 vaccination facility, which opened with much fanfare two weeks ago, closes down, officials said on Friday. The drive-through centre at Vegas Mall in Dwarka, an initiative by the Delhi government and Aakash Healthcare Super Speciality Hospital, was inaugurated by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on May 26.

A vaccine shot at the drive-through facility cost Rs 1,400. On June 8, the central government set the maximum price private hospitals can charge for the three COVID-19 vaccines currently available in the country — Covishield Rs 780 per dose, Covaxin Rs 1,410 and Sputnik V Rs 1,145.

“Delhi’s First Drive Thru, a highly safe, convenient way for public, which we ran non-stop for 15 days, we have decided to stop now, owing to new vaccination pricing, as running it has become non-viable now,” Aakash Healthcare Super Speciality Hospital said in a statement. In a letter to all states and union territories on June 8, the Union health ministry had suggested that strict action be taken against private vaccination centres overcharging for vaccines.

In Maharashtra’s Pune, further relaxation of lockdown curbs has been announced. “From June 14, e-Passes are not required and change of timings for Shops, restaurants, malls..But with same precautions face with medical mask,” CP Pune said.

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Friday announced a 100day action plan to help the state tide over the economic slowdown triggered by the second wave of the COVID19 pandemic. The plan will focus on increasing agricultural production, generating quality employment and augmenting health infrastructure, among other things, and would be implemented between June 11 and September 19.

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