The national capital has been one of the worst-hit by Covid-19 among Indian cities, with 6.31 lakh infected people till now and 10,732 deaths related to the pandemic. As the nation launches it massive fightback today with two vaccines, Delhi will be a key battlefront, with some of the biggest hospitals of the country, along with the several small local centres, forming the vanguard of the counteroffensive. The target is to inoculate 8,000 healthcare workers on day-1.
Vaccinations will begin to be administered in the city at 10.30 am at 81 different locations.
For instance, at central Delhi's Lok Nayak Jaiprakash Narayan Hospital, India's biggest healthcare facility dedicated to the pandemic, 100 Covid warriors will be vaccinated today, according to official plans. The hospital has treated over 10,000 patients for the disease, losing at least three of its personnel in the battle.
No surprises then that the launch of the mission today is cause for major relief and excitement at the hospital. Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal will visit the premises at around noon for a symbolic inaugural ceremony, though the mission would have begun earlier.
Meanwhile, Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan will visit the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) to witness the drive's launch by Prime Minister Narendra Modi at 10.30 am.
Of the two vaccines being deployed, Bharat Biotech's Covaxin will be administered at six central government facilities in Delhi, including AIIMS, while Serum Institute's Covishield will be used at 75 other sites, which include state government facilities and private hospitals.
In all, 2.4 lakh healthcare workers in Delhi have registered for vaccination.