Preparations afoot for vaccination

Mohammad Al Amin

23 January, 2021 12:00 AM printer

The government is going ahead with its preparations to begin the countrywide Covid-19 vaccination programme.

Before launching the nationwide inoculation drive, a dry run will be held by January 28, said sources at the health ministry.

The Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) has launched a campaign on Friday to circulate information on the vaccination programme through newspaper advertisements.

The government seeks to ensure vaccine for all based on the priority and availability of the vaccine. The healthcare providers will get priority in receiving the vaccine.

Frontliners including emergency service providers, freedom fighters, senior citizens, law enforcing agency members, journalists and teachers will get the vaccine as the priority groups.

“All people including over 18 years aged will be given the vaccine in phases,” the DGHS added.

Sources of health ministry said the vaccination programme will be launched at Kurmitola General Hospital. Some 25 frontliners, including doctors and nurses of the hospital will receive the vaccines on the first day as a test case.

“The vaccination programme will be launched through giving vaccine to a health care provider of Kurmitola Gneral Hospital,” Dr. Md. Robed Amin, Line Director (NCDC) and spokesperson of the DGHS told the Daily Sun.

He also said around 500 medical staffs of Kurmitola General Hospital, Mugda General Hospital, Kuwait Bangladesh Friendship Government Hospital and Dhaka Medical College Hospital (DMCH) will be given the vaccine as test case in the next day and they will remain under observation for seven days.

Mentioning that notice will be published about registration for the vaccine, the health directorate said the registered persons will receive the vaccine from the designated vaccination centres and dates as per their registration.

“After taking the vaccine, the recipients will have to wait for at least 30 minutes at the vaccine centres to see whether any side effects occur,” it said. 

The DGHS said even after taking the vaccine, people have to follow preventive measures including wearing face masks and maintaining hygiene.

“The online registration process may start from January 24/25 to expedite the vaccination programme,” a high official of the DGHS told the Daily Sun on Friday.

The government will launch an app, ‘Surakkha’, for the online registration of vaccine recipients. The vaccine seekers can complete registration online at or through the app.

The DGHS also is going to start the training of health care providers who will administer the vaccines in upazila, district and city corporation level from Sunday across the country including in Dhaka.

Health minister Zahid Maleque on Thursday said everybody who needs, will get the vaccine in phases as it may take around one year to bring all citizens under the vaccination programme.

Bangladesh aims to inoculate 16 million people against the coronavirus in the first phase with 32 million doses of Covishield vaccine.

The health ministry sources said the government will run the vaccination at government hospitals at district and upazila levels across the country from February 8.

Earlier, health services division secretary Md Abdul Mannan at a press conference said the government has a plan to vaccinate six million people in the first month and five million in the next month and in the third month, the six million people who received the first shot in the first month would get the second dose.

DGHS said about 37 per cent of people who are under 18 and about 4 million pregnant women will not be brought under the vaccination programme. Severely sick people will also not be given the vaccine.

Talking to the Daily Sun on Friday, Dr Md. Shamsul Haque, Line Director of the DGHS, said “We have earlier made a draft priority list for the vaccination. After completing the registration of the vaccine seekers, it will be finalized who will get the vaccine and what will be the number of the vaccine recipients.” 

Bangladesh is getting 70 lakh Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine ‘Covishield’ in January. The government has got 20 lakh of the same vaccines from the Indian government as a gift on Thursday. And the first consignment of 50 lakh vaccine which is purchased by the government might arrive on January 25.

On January 7, the Directorate General of Drug Administration (DGDA) has approved emergency use of Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine in Bangladesh.