A new notification issued by the Health Ministry has notified that the precautionary dose of the coronavirus vaccine will now be available to all people above the age of 18 years starting from April 10.
There is however a qualification for those over the age of 18, which is that they must have completed a minimum nine-month gap period since their second dose.
In an earlier notification, the health ministry had allowed frontline workers, health workers and senior citizens with co-morbidities. Since then, more than 2.4 precautionary doses have been given. Free vaccination of the first and second doses at government centres will continue at a rapid pace.
According to a press release, 96 per cent of the population over the age of 15 years has received at least the first dose of the coronavirus vaccine. And 83 per cent of the population has received both doses of the vaccine.
It also noted that 45 per cent of the beneficiaries aged 12 to 14 have already received the first dose.
Precautionary doses will be given through private immunization centres, according to the press release. However, the release did not specify whether eligible people would have to pay for the precautionary dose of the COVID vaccine.
The press release clearly states that the covid precautionary dose will be available at private immunisation centres, we can assume that it will be given against a standard price. However, we are not clear whether the prices will be subsidized as they were in the previous vaccination campaign or whether the ministry will determine the price itself.
We believe in this regard we should wait until more clarity is available for the precautionary dose.