Central government has said that door-to-door vaccination for COVID-19 is not possible.
In an affidavit filed before the Bombay High Court, Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare stated that the National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for COVID-19 has been guiding all aspects of the vaccination drive in India.
It has given 5 reasons for not having a door-to-door policy for vaccination.
The Affidavit says, in case of Adverse Event Following Immunization (AEFI), there might be a delay in reaching the health facility and managing that case may not be as per requirement.
It further says, there might be challenges to ensure that the beneficiary of the vaccination is under observation for at least 30 minutes after vaccination.
The Union government has also informed that, the vaccine to be administered might be placed in and out of the ‘vaccine carrier’ for each vaccination thereby increasing the chances of contamination and exposure beyond recommended temperature.
This could in turn affect the vaccine efficacy and cause AEFIs which will be reduce the confidence in the vaccines.
Also Due to increase in time to reach beneficiaries, there could be an increase in wastage of vaccines.
The Health ministry said, it might not be possible to follow the protocols for physical distancing and infection prevention and control during the door to door campaigning.
Responding to a query put by the court regarding the mandatory requirement of Intensive Care Unit (ICU) for administering vaccine, the Ministry responded that the occurrence of AEFI is very rare and may not necessarily require admission in an ICU.
Hence, there is no such requirement for an ICU for the administration of COVID-19 vaccines.