53rd COVID-19 Task Force briefing. Photo/Screengrab
53rd COVID-19 Task Force briefing. Photo/Screengrab

Dharamshala: Addressing the 53rd COVID-19 Taskforce briefing, Dr Tenzin Tsundue informed that Delek Hospital has now been authorised as a vaccination centre in Dharamshala and further informed that the upcoming vaccine session at the hospital will be held on 1, 5, 7, and 9 April.

He added that those above 60 years will be administered free of cost while those above 45 years to 60 years will have to pay Rs 150 per dose free of administration cost.

Addressing the concerns and doubts among people stirred by the Covid vaccine, Dr Tsundue said the vaccine is safe and effective adding that beneficiaries can opt to get the vaccine at different centres as well as change the dates of their inoculation schedule. As for those suffering from hypertension and diabetes, Dr Tsundue advised them to take the shot without hesitation.

In addition, the Covid vaccine recipients are urged to stick to only one brand of vaccine meaning individuals are advised to get both doses of vaccination from the same brand and not otherwise. In the case of India, vaccine recipients can only opt for either Covishield or Covaxin.

As the central government today announced the nationwide vaccine for people above 45 yrs and above, chances of virus transmission may be quite high at the vaccine centres thus Dr Tsundue appealed to the public to maintain the strict protocol of social distancing along with face masking.

As for the pandemic status of the exile Tibetan community, 29 new cases are reported this week as per the data of the CTA’s COVID-19 response committee. Dr Tsering Tsamchoe reported that among the new cases,14 are symptomatic and 15 asymptomatic. The oldest among them is 89 years and the youngest is 17 years. No case of death reported this week.

This brings the total number of cases in the Tibetan community across and India and Nepal to 1720, out of which, 1576 recovered, 97 active cases, and 47 deaths.

As for the weekly status of quarantine, 532 Tibetans are said to have quarantined, of which, 210 are home quarantined and 322 at the institutional quarantine.

The distribution of SORIG immune boosters till now stands at 28387 units. The mental health committee provided tele-counseling services to 13 covid patients. The committee also provided a virtual workshop on mental health to the front liners in Nepal. The mass testing drive covered 1000 Tibetans in India.

Updating the status of the vaccination drive in the Tibetan community, Dr Tsamchoe reported, since January, as the vaccine drive began, a total of 940 front liners have participated in the phase 1 vaccine drive. As for the second phase, a total of 7631people above 60 and those above 45 years with illness received the vaccine. This brings the total vaccinated number in the Tibetan community to 8571.

Warning against the resurgence of cases, Dr Tsamchoe cautioned the public against negligence in tackling the covid and urged them to strictly adhere to Covid guidelines. India recorded a sudden spike in the numbers in a short period of time. More than 30,000 new cases were recorded in a single day last week.

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