Those intending to undertake international travel for education purposes, joining work or are part of the Indian contingent to the Tokyo Olympics will be allowed to take the second dose of Covishield prior to the prescribed time interval of 84 days after the first dose. However, according to the standard operating procedures (SOPs) issued by the health ministry on Monday, even in these cases, the second dose will only be administered after 28 days from the date of the first dose.
The Co-WIN system will soon provide the facility for the administration of the second dose in such exceptional cases, the ministry said.
It said it has received several representations for allowing the administration of the second dose of Covishield to people who have taken the first dose and are seeking to undertake international travel for education or for employment opportunities or as part of the Indian contingent for the Tokyo Olympics, but whose planned travel dates fall prior to the completion of the currently mandated minimum gap of 84 days from the date of the first dose.
The matter has been discussed in the Empowered Group 5 (EG-5) and appropriate recommendations have been received.
In this context, with a view to provide full coverage of vaccination and facilitating international travel for such genuine reasons, the ministry has issued the SOPs according to which the states shall designate an authority in each district to grant permission for administering the second dose of Covishield. The authority shall check whether 28 days have elapsed after the date of the first dose and the genuineness of the purpose of travel, based on documents related to admission offers or associated formal communications for educational purpose.
The ministry advised that vaccination may be availed in such cases through passport, which is one of the permissible ID documents according to the current guidelines, so that the passport number is printed on the vaccination certificate.
However, if the passport was not used at the time of the administration of the first dose, the details of the photo ID card used for vaccination will be printed on the vaccination certificate and a mention of the passport number on the vaccination certificate is not to be insisted upon, the SOPs stated. Wherever necessary, the authority may issue another certificate linking the vaccination certificate with the passport number of the beneficiary, it stated.
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