The nationwide vaccination drive continues in the midst of the second Covid wave. The situation in some states like Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh is dire, with inoculation centres running out of vaccines in a matter of hours every day.
The BMC has opened several drive-in vaccination centres in different parts of Mumbai city. While there are many centres for senior citizens, there are a few others where people above the age of 45 can take their cars. However, drive-in inoculation centres will benefit the privileged few. The majority of the population cannot avail of this facility; the underserved will be left out from the drive because of the sheer chaos caused by vaccine shortage, wastage and overcrowding at centres.
To manage the crowd, separate queues can be set up for those coming in for their first and second dose respectively. Prior online appointment for the first jab should be compulsory. Maharashtra could take a leaf out of Gujarat’s book in the drive. Only those people who had registered themselves on the CoWIN portal were allowed entry and given a token at the centre on the basis of SMS received by them specifying the date, place and time for vaccination.
Vaccination drives by India Inc
Another solution to ensure no one is left behind is corporate social responsibility. Community vaccination is recognised as a legitimate CSR activity. Corporates are enabling the unprivileged in India to optimally benefit through Covid-19 vaccination drives in the second wave.
SBI General Insurance
SBI General Insurance was one of the first corporates to extend such kind of support to the community. SBI General has been covering the cost of two shots of COVID-19 vaccination for low-income groups in Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh since March. This CSR initiative aims to provide free COVID-19 vaccination to more than 37,000 beneficiaries including senior citizens and people with co-morbidities.
Procter & Gamble
FMCG major Procter & Gamble has pledged Rs. 50 crore towards COVID-19 vaccination of over 5 lakh Indians to be carried out in partnership with government and local authorities. The company said it is contributing towards the vaccination of 100 Indians for every P&G employee in India. P&G brands Whisper, Vicks, Pampers, Oral-B, Head&Shoulders and Pantene are partnering in this vaccination drive through their brand programmes and will also continue to raise awareness on safety and hygiene. Needless to say, the company is inoculating its employees and their families free of cost as well.
Supporting the Government’s COVID-19 vaccination programme, Ambuja Cement Foundation (ACF), the CSR arm of Ambuja Cements, has facilitated in vaccinating over 75,000 beneficiaries in rural India. During the preparation of the first phase, ACF followed a systematic approach with regard to the vaccination drive in its adopted villages in various states. It networked and carried out input awareness sessions first with ACF staff, village volunteers and later with the Panchayati Raj Institution members. In Phase-2, ACF worked on-ground in remote areas across the country, identifying and reaching out to healthcare staff, frontline workers, and aged population who fall in the category for vaccination laid down by the Government.
ACF will continue to extend its support to the local health and government authorities in mobilizing 45+ population to get vaccinated in Phase 3. This will ensure great coverage to people placed in remote interiors.
The Omaxe Group is running a vaccination campaign to help construction workers fight the epidemic. Omaxe Royal Residency recently held a COVID-19 vaccination camp for construction workers over the age of 18 years in Ludhiana. Omaxe Group organized this drive in partnership with the Government of Punjab, Labour Department and Health Department at the Omaxe Club. A team of doctors advised workers on how to protect themselves from the novel coronavirus.
Muthoot Finance is India’s largest gold loan NBFC. The company has initiated a COVID-19 vaccination support project through its mobile laboratory Muthoot Snehasraya in assocation with Myvacc.in that will provide vaccination drives in Karnataka. The company plans to expand the drive to other states later. Muthoot Finance aims to help the underprivileged 45+ segment to get vaccinated and encourages vaccination to build a protective shield that will help in fighting against the second wave of COVID-19.
Daimler India Commercial Vehicles (DICV) has announced the opening of a vaccination centre at its truck and bus manufacturing plant in Oragadam near Chennai. The facility will be open from Monday to Saturday. It will have five vaccination booths and will be open for the local community. The centre can cater to up to 250 people a day. DICV is planning a vaccination drive for all truck drivers irrespective of the brand of trucks driven by them.
Vedanta Limited conducted a Covid-19 vaccination drive in collaboration with the Community Health Centres of Lanjigarh and Biswanathpur. The drive will cover more than 60 villages in the periphery of Vedanta’s alumina refinery plant, reaching out to nearly 1,200 people. The company will also assist the programme by mobilizing the beneficiaries from their villages to the vaccination centres.