Vaccinate industrial workers, families
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday directed the authorities concerned to design a separate programme to bring the industrial workers and their families under the Covid-19 vaccination coverage soon.
She also asked to consider whether it would be possible to shorten the existing two-month gap between two shots, reports UNB.
The PM made the directives while chairing the cabinet meeting held virtually, said Cabinet Secretary Khandker Anwarul Islam at a press briefing.
Hasina joined the meeting from the Gono Bhaban and the others from the secretariat.
She came up with the directives a week after the government struck a trilateral agreement for bottling, labelling and dispensing six crore shots of China's Sinopharm vaccine at a Bangladeshi pharmaceutical company plant. Health officials at that time said it would need around three months to go for production.
"A special discussion was held over the industrial workers today [in the meeting]…. Since Bangladesh would get six crore doses of vaccine from Sinopharm as per an agreement signed by the health ministry, the prime minister gave the instruction to vaccinate the workers quickly bringing them under a separate programme," said the cabinet secretary.
Besides, Hasina said she would herself oversee the matter.
"The prime minister has given instructions to vaccinate not only the workers but also their family members as forerunners," said Anwarul.
Meanwhile, Health Minister Zahid Maleque said there would be no more special campaign for mass Covid-19 vaccination due to the shortage of vaccines.
Besides, there will be no on-the-spot registration facility to take Covid-19 vaccines.
"No one will get vaccines without registration," the minister said while talking to journalists at the secretariat yesterday.
He said, "More than three and a half crore people have registered and [of them] more than two crore have been vaccinated. Registration will be based on the amount of vaccine available."
On August 15, the health minister said the government was not able to carry out the special vaccination campaign due to shortage of Covid-19 vaccine shots.
From August 6-11, the government carried out a special vaccination campaign countrywide under which around 34 people were inoculated through on-the-spot registration.
Meanwhile, those waiting for long for the second dose of AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine have been asked to contact the nearest vaccination centres as early as possible for getting the shot.
In this regard, Directorate General of Health Services posted an announcement on its verified Facebook page yesterday.
Bangladesh received 7,81,440 doses of AstraZeneca vaccine from Japan on August 21.
From Japan, under the Covax facility, Bangladesh also received 2,45,200 AstraZeneca doses on July 24, and 7,81,320 doses on July 31, and 6,16,780 doses on August 3.
At a vaccine handover programme, Japanese Ambassador to Dhaka, ITO Naoki, said they have plans to deliver 6,34,920 more AstraZeneca jabs to Bangladesh on August 28.