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HomeIndia“Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh wasted most vaccines; 1 out of 3 misspent”- Health Ministry

“Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh wasted most vaccines; 1 out of 3 misspent”- Health Ministry

While several states in the country have stopped their vaccination drive due to an immense shortage of vaccines, 2 states have surfaced as the vaccine wasters. According to the data released by the health ministry, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh have wasted the greatest number in India as 1 out of 3 vaccines does not reach recipients here.  

The official number comes amid a time when inoculations have halted temporarily despite the Centre opening vaccine access to 18+ citizens as well- thanks to the lack of enough vaccines to suffice all.  

Jharkhand topped the list as it wasted more than a third (37.3%) covid shots given to it. Chhattisgarh stands second as it wasted 30.2% of vaccines allotted. Following suit was Tamil Nadu wasting 15.5%. The health ministry disclosed the mishap while mentioning that many states are raising complaints of vaccine scarcity while merrily wasting them as well.  

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As per the ministry, India’s average rate of vaccines getting wasted is 6.3 per cent.  

Speaking about the data released last evening officials said, “Whereas states have been urged repeatedly to keep vaccine wastage below one per cent, many states such as Jharkhand (37.3%), Chhattisgarh (30.2%), Tamil Nadu (15.5%), Jammu and Kashmir (10.8 %) and Madhya Pradesh (10.7%) are reporting much higher wastage than the national average.” 

Health ministry officials said, “In any big vaccination drive, some wastage is always factored in and that is used to buy and distribute vaccines. States are allocated vaccines according to the population and needs. The Wastage Multiple Factor is very important in deciding these figures.” 

Defending the state was Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren who said that the correct figure of vaccines utilized couldn’t be posted on CoWin website due to technical issues. 

He tweeted saying that the total wastage was 4.56% only and not the bigger figure released by the ministry. “As per total vaccine doses availability with the government of Jharkhand till today, the current vaccine wastage proportion is only 4.65 per cent,” his tweet read.  

The reasons for wastage are many, as according to the ministry, it could be due to doses being unused and crossing their expiry date, getting destroyed as a result of extreme cold or heat or theft of vials.  

Those vaccines which get spoilt and lose their ability to provide protection while still being in the vial become so because of factors like complete dose not getting injected, people not reaching vaccination centres on time or dropping an open vial into water.  

“States, where there is the most vaccine wastage, are clearly unable to run the vaccination drive effectively. A part of it is due to lack of awareness,” officials said while adding, “These states have to try and avoid any carelessness in vaccination. Each wasted dose means a person being denied vaccine.”