Registration of over 20,000 people completed as of Sunday
Health authorities are considering help from the ICT Division to ensure that technology illiterate people can complete Covid-19 vaccine registration.
The nationwide vaccination program is set to officially begin in all districts and upazilas on February 7, and a trial run of the vaccine program with 567 recipients is currently ongoing in Dhaka. No one in the trial run has reported any adverse effects yet.
“We are thinking that our staff at upazila offices of the ICT Division will be able to help people who are unable to complete their registration. The plan is for people to go to the offices to register at the determined time, and then they will be sent a message telling them when to go for vaccination,” Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) Director General Dr ABM Khurshid Alam said on Sunday.
Details of the new approach to vaccine registration will be circulated through loudspeakers once the plan is finalized, the DG added.
He further said the vaccine program will be expanded to the union parishad level after the first set of vaccinations at the district and upazila levels.
A total 6 million people are set to get their first doses of the vaccine in the first month of the vaccine program. A further 5 million people will get their first doses in the second month, and the first batch of vaccine recipients will get their second doses in the third month.
Covid-19 vaccine registration app Surokkha on Google Play by February 4
The Surokkha app, developed to help people register to receive the Covid-19 vaccine in Bangladesh, will be made available on Google Play by February 4, DGHS DG Khurshid Alam said.
Vaccine registration website www.surokkha.gov.bd has been open to the public since Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated it on January 27.
Officials concerned said they have made a version of the app for iOS devices as well, but the authorities are waiting for feedback on the Google Play version before submitting it to the Apple App Store.
According to DGHS, around 20,000 people had completed online registration for the vaccine as of 5pm yesterday.
1 million doses for Dhaka, N’ganj and Gazipur
A total of around one million people in Dhaka, Naraynaganj and Gazipur are set to receive the Covid-19 vaccine in the first month.
The doses of the vaccine for the three districts will be provided entirely from the gift of 2 million vaccine doses from India in the first month.
DGHS Line Director (MNC and AH) Dr Shamsul Haque, also member secretary of the DGHS Covid-19 management committee, said no other district would receive such a large allocation.
“We are allocating vaccine doses based on population and number of infections in the districts,” he added, mentioning that specifics of the district-wise allocation were still not cast in stone as of Sunday afternoon.
DGHS DG Dr Khurshid said Beximco Pharmaceuticals had informed them that all districts in the country would have the vaccine by Monday.
Bangladesh received the first batch of 5 million doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine from the Serum Institute of India (SII) on January 25. On January 21, Bangladesh received 2 million doses of the vaccine as a gift from the Indian government.
Meeting with local units over vaccination preparation today
The DGHS DG said preparations for the nationwide vaccination program are on the verge of completion.
Necessary training for vaccination teams were completed yesterday, he added.
All district units will get the coolers for transportation of the vaccine and the required syringes within two or three days.
“We will soon hold a meeting with all the district unit heads, civil surgeons, upazila heads and upazila healthcare officers for their feedback on any issues that needs to be addressed,” the DG said.