BBMP rushes to vaccinate kids before summer vacation

With summer vacation beginning on April 10, health and municipal authorities will try to vaccinate as many children as possible against Covid-19 on the weekend. 

Authorities expect a large number of children to visit schools on Saturday and Sunday to collect their exam results. 

At 9 pm on Friday, only 27% of the 12-14-year-olds in the BBMP limits had been vaccinated with Corbevax. Out of a target of 2,81,542 children, only 77,350 had been inoculated in the city. 

Also Read | India’s first XE variant case misclassified? Bengaluru labs disagree 

On Friday, the BBMP held a marathon meeting with the Department of Public Instruction and Associated Managements of Primary and Secondary Schools in Karnataka (KAMS) to devise a strategy for the vaccination. 

BBMP Special Commissioner (Health) Dr K V Trilok Chandra said there are 2,890 schools within the BBMP limits, with a higher concentration of private schools. 

“Only in the last eight days have we got an opportunity to take the vaccination to schools. Bengaluru predominantly has private schools and even with 15-17-year-olds, we could administer most doses at schools and not at health facilities. In the past three days, we have increased the coverage by 15%. While it was 10.5% on April 4, today we have reached 25%,” said Dr Chandra. 

Also Read | Covid: Centre writes to 5 states warning them against any laxity

The highest number of schools are concentrated in the BBMP’s South Zone. A joint circular will be issued shortly by the Commissioner of Public Instruction asking schools to contact parents and facilitate students’ visits to schools in the next week to 10 days. 

“We had a meeting with the private schools’ association, block education officers, our staff and deputy directors of public instruction. Our teams are in touch with private schools. Tomorrow and the day after are the result days in many schools. So, we want the maximum vaccination coverage over the next two days. Many schools have decided to organise summer camps and special classes during the vacation also, so we are hoping to cover those students as well in the next few days.”  

Dr Shivakumar, Health Officer, BBMP South Zone, told DH: “We have a target of 35,000 children in this age group and have jabbed 50% as on Friday.” 

Bomb hoax

“We hope the bomb hoax email will not deter parents from sending children to schools for vaccination considering that it has been established that the bomb threat was a hoax,” Dr Chandra said. 

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