A consignment carrying around 2.5 lakh doses of the ‘Covishield’ vaccine landed at the national capital’s IGI Airport on Tuesday and is slated to reach Rajiv Gandhi Super Speciality Hospital (RGSSH), Delhi’s only vaccine storage facility, officials told IANS.
This is the first consignment of ‘Covishield’ vaccine which arrived at Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA) on Tuesday morning. The consignment from Pune to Delhi consists of 34 boxes and weighs 1,088 kgs. The doses will be transported in a special vehicle under heavy security to the RGSSH.
The Delhi government-run RGSSH is among the key Covid-19 facilities in the national capital, which is also doubling up as a vaccine storage house. The hospital has undergone robust preparations for the storage of vaccines, which will first be used to inoculate around 3 lakh health workers in Delhi before other priority groups are immunized.
The officials informed that the vaccines will be stored at a three-story building in an area of 4,700 square feet, located in a relatively secluded corner of the campus, that will serve as the nerve center of the vaccine storage exercise. Ahead of the arrival of the doses, the facility was taken over by the Delhi government’s directorate of family welfare and restricted for public entry.
The officials told IANS that even the hospital staff are not allowed to enter the building without permission from the government.
The officials involved in the process said that the vaccines would be stored at the ground floor and first floor of the facility while the third floor will be used to keep the syringes and other essentials required during the vaccination.
A total of 90 deep freeze refrigerators have been installed there to store the vaccines in a temperature range of 2-8 degrees Celsius.
The Delhi government has chosen 89 sites in the national capital, including government and private hospitals, for the first phase of the immunization drive meant for healthcare workers.
AIIMS, Safdarjung Hospital, LNJP Hospital, GTB Hospital, Apollo Hospital, and Max Hospital will be among the vaccination centers here.
The aviation ministry informed earlier in the day that 9 flights from Pune carrying 56.5 lakh doses will be operated to 13 locations across the country on Tuesday. The locations include Delhi, Chennai, Kolkata, Guwahati, Shillong, Ahmedabad, Hyderabad, Vijayawada, Bhubaneswar, Patna, Bengaluru, Lucknow, and Chandigarh.
The Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) has approved two vaccines – Covishield by Pune-based SII and Covaxin by Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech International Limited – for emergency use authorization (EUA) against Covid-19 in the country.