Workplace vaccination drive to include staff and dependents: Centre

This move will accelerate the pace of vaccination, improve accessibility and benefit almost 50 lakh people.

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The vaccination drives at private workplaces can cover the employees as well as their family members, according to a new directive from the Union Health Ministry. Permission has been given by the Centre to allow the dependents of employees to get their vaccine shots at the workplaces.

This means, employees, their spouses, children, parents, in-laws and other dependents may be inoculated, depending on what constitutes ‘family’ and ‘dependents’ for the employers, as per their policies.

The vaccines for these additional beneficiaries will have to be obtained from the hospitals that the employers tie up with, for the vaccination drive.

In case of the vaccine centres at government offices, the inoculation may be done for those above the age of 45, using the vaccines supplied by the Government to the states and union territories.

Earlier, the Health Ministry had increased accessibility to vaccines by allowing those over 45 to get inoculated at public and private workplaces. Now that the dependents of employees have also been allowed, the accessibility of the vaccine for the 18 to 44 age bracket increased manifold. This age bracket may be vaccinated with vaccines obtained by the state governments and union territories from the vaccine manufacturers themselves.

The move is expected to benefit almost 50 lakh people.

This decision to include family members of employees at workplace vaccination drives was taken after various organsiations and industry representatives drew the attention of the Ministry of Health to the fact that simply vaccinating the employees will not serve any purpose.

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