Chief Minister Yediyurappa, on Monday, announced that the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) recommended starting vaccination drives at large apartment complexes in seven districts that have seen a rise in COVID-19 cases. He also said that electoral rolls would be used to identify senior citizens in order to make sure they get vaccinated.
The seven districts listed are Bidar, Kalaburagi, Bengaluru Rural, Bengaluru Urban, Udupi, Tumkur and Dakshina Kannada. And in Bengaluru, apartment associations and resident welfare associations (RWAs) have been actively participating in the COVID-19 vaccination effort by making sure senior citizens are being given priority when it comes to getting vaccinations.
“Several apartment managements, including ours, contacted the local Primary Healthcare Centre (PHC) at Garudachar Palya and requested they give slots to prevent the senior citizens having to wait for long. The PHC provided us with slots and we could take our senior citizens and get them vaccinated accordingly,” said Vishnu Gattupalli, governing council member of Bangalore Apartment Federation (BAF) and president of Trifecta Starlight Apartment, speaking to TNM.
He further added, “In a recent meeting with the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) they said that they could conduct vaccination drives in our apartment complexes itself. Then we need not take our senior citizens to the centres, they can come to us.”
The BBMP has made preliminary preparations to conduct such vaccination drives, but is waiting on necessary Standard Operating Procedures and a go-ahead from the government.
“In our zone, we have collected all the necessary lists of elderly residents from RWAs and asked private hospitals to train the teams and keep ambulances ready with ventilators and oxygen to handle Adverse event following immunisation (AEFI), in case there are any,” said Dr Surendra, BBMP Health Officer, Mahadevapura Zone.
According to the health office, the major concern during vaccination has been AEFI and so it wasn’t being done anywhere other than health facilities such as hospitals and PHCs. But now with the combined efforts of RWAs, private hospitals and the BBMP, vaccination drives like these could be possible.
Dr Surendra added, “By doing this we can provide service to the most vulnerable, people above 70 years, who in many cases can’t really travel far or have other difficulties.”