As India battles the second wave Covid tsunami, India has laid out plans to expand its vaccination drive to everyone above the age of 18 years starting from May 1. Supreme Court meanwhile has asked the Central government to clarify the projected requirement of vaccines as a result of the expansion in coverage countrywide and also asked it to explain by April 30 the reason for the differential pricing of vaccines in the country. 

Maharashtra government has written to Covid-19 vaccine manufacturers Serum Institute of India (SII) and Bharat Biotech about the state’s vaccination requirements ahead of the next phase of the inoculation drive which starts on May 1. The state health minister Rajesh Tope had informed media that about 12 crore vaccines would be required to fully vaccinate the adult population. The Centre on April 19 had announced a ”liberalised” policy, making all above 18 years of age eligible to get vaccinated from May 1. It has also allowed state governments and private hospitals to purchase vaccines from manufacturers.

Central government had announced that manufacturers of Covid-19 vaccines will be free to supply 50 per cent doses to state governments and in the open market, for which they will have to make an advance declaration of the price before May 1. Ahead of the phase 3 vaccination, the Centre has given clear instructions to the medical fraternity and asked to only use fresh stock for those who will be injecting the vaccines starting May 1.

The existing doses will be used only for the 45 years and hence if you are above 18 and below 45 years, then one will be administered vaccination vaccines from a fresh stock. In this trying times, May 1 is when vaccinations for all begins, all eligible recipients, above 18 years, are eligible for vaccination for COVID-19.

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