Denying any inequity in the distribution of Covid vaccines, the Centre said on Saturday that private hospitals received over 1.20 crore vaccine doses in the month of May.
The Union Health Ministry emphasised that the government of India, in close partnership with all the states and Union Territories (UTs), is running one of the largest Covid-19 vaccination drives in the world since January 16.
“Some media reports have alleged inequity in India’s vaccination drive. These reports are inaccurate and speculative in nature,” the Health Ministry said.
The Health Ministry said that a ‘Liberalised Pricing and Accelerated National Covid-19 Vaccination Strategy’ was adopted on May 1, which is guiding the ongoing Phase-III of the vaccination drive.
“It is reiterated that the liberalised vaccine policy, which envisages a larger role for the private sector and the Centre, is setting aside 25 per cent of vaccines for the private sector. This mechanism facilitates better access and reduces the operational stress on the government vaccination facilities in terms of those who could afford to pay and would prefer to go to a private hospital,” the ministry said.
As per government data on June 1, private hospitals had received over 1.20 crore vaccine doses in May.
The Health Ministry pointed out that these private hospitals are not limited to the metro cities, but also cover the Tier II and III cities across the states.
The government said that the Health Ministry is working closely with all the states and UTs to make the vaccination drive a success.
“The states with less number of private hospitals have been requested to review their status and list out the better performing hospitals under the AB-PMJAY and the state specific insurance schemes, keeping a geographical spread in mind and encouraging them to get in agreement with the vaccine manufacturers,” the Health Ministry said.
Regular communication is also being done with all the states and UTs, informing them on the vaccines received by the private hospitals against the contracted doses so that their performance is closely monitored. Also, a regular review is being taken with the manufacturers to follow-up on the status of each delivery that needs to be made to the states/private institutions, the Health Ministry said.