Consider allowing RWAs to run vaccine camps with hospitals, HC asks Centre


By Express News Service

NEW DELHI:  The Delhi High Court has asked the Centre to ‘seriously’ consider involving Residents Welfare Associations (RWAs) in the Covid-19 vaccination drive.

If the authorities are not inclined to permit RWAs to organise vaccination camps in assosiation with private hospitals, the reasons shall be disclosed in a status report, the high court said.

“In our view, the said aspect deserves serious consideration, and unless there are any specific reasons why the central government would not want the RWAs to play a role in the vaccination drive, there should be no impediment in designating the camps organised by the RWAs in association with private hospitals as vaccination centres run by private hospitals,” it said.

“Permitting vaccinations to be undertaken at such camps would go a long way in making it convenient and safe for the residents of the colonies to get themselves vaccinated at such centres. The central government should, therefore, seriously consider this proposal at the earliest,” said a bench of Justices Vipin Sanghi and Jasmeet Singh while hearing pleas relating to management of Covid-19 crisis in Delhi.

The court, in its June 4 order, asked the Centre to file a status report in this regard by July 7, when it will hear the matter on reopening after vacations. 

The issue relating to permit the RWAs to carry out vaccinations for the residents of the locality was raised by amicus curiae Raj Shekhar Rao.

He said on May 29, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has issued a clarification regarding the scope of vaccination by private hospitals.

As per the order, private hospitals are permitted to carry out Covid-19 vaccinations through private centres run by them and no other avenue. 

Issue raised by amicus curiae Rao

Amicus curiae Raj Shekhar Rao pointed out that prior to issuance of this order by the health ministry, several RWAs had organised vaccination camps in collaboration with private hospitals keeping in view the convenience of the residents and to avoid overcrowding at other vaccination centres

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