NEW DELHI ;
The COVID-19 vaccine will be given free of cost at Government hospitals, while people will need to pay for it at private facilities
PRIVATE hospitals can charge up to Rs 250 per dose of COVID-19 vaccine, official sources said on Saturday as India prepares to vaccinate people aged above 60 years and those over 45 with comorbidities from March 1. The COVID-19 vaccine will be given free of cost at Government hospitals, while people will need to pay for it at private facilities. “Rs 250 will be the ceiling -- Rs 150 cost of vaccine plus Rs 100 service charge.
This arrangement will remain effective till further orders,” a source said. According to sources, States and Union Territories have been informed about it. The Union Health Ministry on Friday had said beneficiaries would be able to self-register in advance by downloading the Co-WIN 2.0 portal and through other IT applications such as Aarogya Setu, which will show the Government and private hospitals serving as COVID-19 vaccination centres (CVCs) with date and time of the available schedules. The beneficiary would be able to choose the CVC of his/her choice and book an appointment for vaccination, the Ministry said. There will be facility of on-site registration so that eligible beneficiaries can walk into identified vaccination centres, get themselves registered and inoculated. “Eligible beneficiaries would be able to register themselves on the Co-WIN platform from March 1 itself,” R S Sharma, Chairman of Empowered Group on COVID-19 Vaccine Administration had said.
The nationwide COVID-19 vaccination drive was launched on January 16. This is now to be exponentially expanded to the age-groups -- all citizens above 60 years and those within the age bracket of 45 to 59 years with specified co-morbidities -- from March 1. During a meeting held on Friday, representatives of States and UTs were explained the basic features of version 2.0 of the digital platform Co-WIN, which is a population-scale software with capacity of processing several thousands of entries. It was pointed out that all CVCs must be health facilities which are Government health facilities such as sub health centres (SHCs), primary health centres (PHCs), community health centres (CHCs), Ayushman Bharat Health and Wellness Centres, Sub-Division Hospitals, District Hospitals and Medical College Hospitals or private hospitals empanelled under the Central Government Health Scheme (CGHS), Ayushman Bharat- Pradhan Mantri Jan Aarogya Yojana (AB-PM JAY) and similar State Health Insurance Schemes. States and UTs were asked to ensure that the private health facilities have adequate space for the vaccination process, as detailed in the comprehensive SOPs issued by the ministry, basic cold chain equipments, their own team of vaccinators and staff, and adequate facility for management of any adverse event following immunisation (AEFI) cases for using them as CVCs.