The Corona vaccine is the first adult vaccine of the world, which is so much eagerly awaited.
We should give all the credits to our scientists and researchers who have developed this vaccine in record time frame. India has come out as the pharmacy of the world. I have come across a statement of Canadian PM, Justine Trudeau , where he gives credit to India in saving the world from Corona.
In India, after administering the vaccine to doctors, health care workers and front liners, vaccination has been opened for senior citizens (above 60 years) and 45 +age group who have comorbities.
The registration for vaccine has started on 1st March itself. I was following all the news regarding this as I am keen to be vaccinated at the earliest. One confusion regarding taking an appointment was that, though registration can be done through the Co-WIN or Arogya setu app but to book a slot, one has to go to the website. When after few trials, I can not get the appointment on app, I tried on the Co-WIN website. It was afternoon of March 1st and I could get the appointment of 28th March. Besides registrations, another channel of walk-ins is also available.
On 2nd March, we have tried again and got the appointment of the same day afternoon. We went to the designated hospital little before time. I was expecting some technical (or otherwise ) glitches as it’s just the 2nd day of the vaccination roll out.
On reaching there, we found a number of seniors sitting there with some forms in hand. On enquiry, we were told to fill the hospital form and then wait for a call from the hospital for the date and time slot. No timeframe was given. We (me and RB) came back disappointed with almost no clue when we will be vaccinated.
On 3rd morning, my yoga class was just over and I was thinking about what to cook for the breakfast. Deeply contemplating upon the available ingredients, ease of cooking and what can be cooked, my thoughts were broken abruptly by the ring of my mobile. It was an unknown number but I picked it up. The caller said that he is calling from hospital and you have been allotted 11 – 12 noon slot for vaccination. This call has energized me.
I opted for the simplest and popular family breakfast of bread pakoras. It’s everyone’s favorite. My dad like them as they are soft and suitable for his toothless mouth.
We reached the hospital 15 minutes before our slot. There were few people sitting in the que, but no information about where we stand. One senior citizen, who might be waiting for sometime lost his temper and started shouting and cursing the system and hospital. This brings out the administrator and he explained the system. There were two channels – walk-ins with no prior registration and pre registered who were called by the hospital. We were handed over the forms and shown our place in the que, where we sat and moved one step ahead. It took 90 minutes in the whole process. They checked the ID card and payment of ₹250 was made before going to the vaccination room. I was administered Covishield vaccine. I did not feel anything except the mild prick. After the vaccination, we had to wait in the observation room. As we were feeling fine, so we were told to go after 20 minutes. Generally, people are asked to wait upto 30 minutes. The sister told us to take paracetamol, if feeling body ache or feverish.
For the second dose, hospital will call to inform time and date. Fair enough.
Here are some points which must be kept in mind before going for vaccination for senior citizens –
1. Take original ID card like pan card, aadhar card, election/ voter card or passport.
2. Go with stomach full. Have a sumptuous meal before taking the shot.
3. Don’t forget to take a water bottle as summers are setting in.
4. If under medication, take your prescription along.
5. If allergic to some medicine, do inform before-hand.
6. It takes around 1.5 to 4.5 hrs depending upon the city, so be prepared for this. Keep some biscuits or dry snacks or a fruit.
7. If not feeling well, postpone your visit to some other day by calling the hospital.
8. You may also take someone younger for support, if need be.
9. Don’t miss the second shot. They both make the complete vaccination.
10. Vaccine takes approximately a fortnight’s time to be effective, so keep mask and follow social distancing. Do not go out, unless unavoidable.