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Health Secretary Writes to States to Expedite Vaccination Among 15-18-Year-Olds

Currently, every person above the age of 15 is eligible to receive the vaccine.

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Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan on Wednesday, 2 February, wrote to the state governments to expedite the second dose of vaccination coverage among the newly eligible individuals, between the ages of 15 and 18 years.

According to the the letter, the government has administered 166.68 crore doses of COVID-19 vaccines, one of the highest numbers in the world.

Bhushan reiterated that the vaccination phase for the 15-18 age group was made available from 3 January this year, completing 4.66 crore doses till date. He added that since then, in a period less than a month, 63 percent of the total eligible have received their first dose.

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"Timely completion of COVID-19 vaccination schedule is important to confer full protection of vaccines to the recipients. Hence it is important that the coverage of the second dose of adolescents is reviewed daily at your level at state/UT and similar review is undertaken at districts as well."
Union Health Secretary, Rajesh Bhushan

"The vaccine used in this group is Covaxin, which has an interval of 28 days between the two doses to complete the primary vaccination schedule. Hence, all the 42 lakh adolescents who received the first dose of vaccine on 3 January are eligible for the second dose from 31 January," the letter read.

He urged the state governments and Union territories to accelerate the process of second dose of vaccination among adolescents.

He also suggested the tailoring of a communication strategy focussed at the adolescent population and advised their caregivers to acquaint them of the importance of timely completion of vaccination, to "sustain their vaccine confidence".

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