‘Exemplary Performance’; Kerala, West Bengal Report Negative Vaccine Wastage, Administered Extra Doses

Kerala and West Bengal recorded negative wastage of COVID-19 vaccines in May, saving 1.10 lakh and 1.61 lakh doses respectively, while Jharkhand reported maximum wastage of 33.95 per cent, according to government data. While Kerala reported -6.37 per cent vaccine wastage, West Bengal recorded -5.48 per cent.

In fact, the two states Kerala and WB reported negative wastage of Covid vaccines by making use of the “extra dose” available as a wastage factor in each vial.

“Exemplary performance by Kerala and West Bengal which recorded a negative vaccine wastage shows that optimum use and diligent supply management of vaccines is possible,” central government officials were quoted by Times of India.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had earlier lauded the Kerala government’s efforts to stop the vaccine wastage when Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan tweeted data regarding the wastage of coronavirus vaccine in the state.

The Kerala cabinet meeting held on 9 May decided to establish a vaccine manufacturing unit in the state. The unit will be set up in the Bio 360 Life Sciences Park in Thonnakkal in Thiruvananthapuram district.

Chhattisgarh reported 15.79 per cent vaccine wastage while Madhya Pradesh reported 7.35 per cent. States like Punjab, Delhi, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat and Maharashtra reported 7.08 per cent, 3.95 per cent, 3.91 per cent, 3.78 and 3.63 per cent and 3.59 per cent respectively.

However, terming the vaccine wastage figure of Jharkhand by the Centre as “old data”, the Hemant Soren government Thursday said it has received permission from the central ministry to rectify the related data and the vaccine wastage was 1.5 per cent in the state.

The data showed that a total of 790.6 lakh vaccines were supplied to states and UTs in May out of which total vaccinations were 610.6 lakh while 658.6 lakh shots were utilised and the closing balance was 212.7 lakh.

The vaccination in May was less as compared to April in which a total of 898.7 lakh vaccinations were done, 902.2 lakh vaccines were utilised and the closing balance was 80.8 lakh. India’s first dose coverage of the 45-plus population till June 7 was pegged at 38 per cent with Tripura’s coverage being 92 per cent, Rajasthan and Chattisgarh 65 per cent each, Gujarat 53 per cent, Kerala 51 per cent and Delhi 49 per cent.

Tamil Nadu’s first dose coverage of the 45-plus population is at a low of 19 per cent, Jharkhand and Uttar Pradesh at 24 per cent each and Bihar at 25 per cent.