Covaxin- the vaccine developed by Bharat Biotech was recently mandated by the local administration as the only vaccine to be used from Monday. But several people who had reached some big hospitals to get their first dose of vaccine was denied because the hospitals had run out of stock.
Officials at Deenanath Mangeshkar Hospital, Ruby Hall Clinic, Noble Hospital, and a few other hospitals said that they could not vaccinate those who arrived for their first doses because Covaxin supplies had not yet arrived. However, by evening, at least 50,000 doses of Covaxin had been distributed to various hospitals, and vaccinations would resume from Tuesday.
On Sunday, the Civic Administration had directed hospitals to give Serum Institute’s Covishield to only those people whose first shot of vaccine was the Covishield vaccine. All the new recipient’s from Monday onwards would be receiving only Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin. The decision to use Covaxin was taken because all the local hospitals had exhausted their stock of Covishield, and there was no clarity on when new stocks would arrive.
Dr Ashish Bharti, the chief medical officer, said that the civic administration had received almost 2.2 lakh doses of Covishield. Several of these doses had been bought by private hospitals that had paid the money according to the government’s guidelines. They now, however, don’t have any information on when new doses will be provided. So, they have mandated the use of Covaxin as they don’t want the vaccination drive to stop.
The government hospitals’ remaining Covishield doses were being sent to Kamla Nehru Hospital, Rajiv Gandhi Hospital and Sassoon general hospital. The people who have already taken the first dose of Covishield can receive their second dose.
This sudden change in vaccination protocol created confusion in the hospitals, and many first-timers were sent back. The spokesperson of all these hospitals had the same thing to say. That since they didn’t have additional doses for Covaxin, they sent back all the newcomers as the remaining stock would give the second dose to the already vaccinated people.