It was announced by the centre on Monday that all people undertaking international travel for either employment opportunities, educational purposes, or as part of India’s contingent for the Tokyo Olympic games will have to get their CoWIN certificates linked to their passport for a Covid-19 vaccination.
The Union Health Ministry received several representations for allowing the administration of the second dose of Covishield for people who have only taken the first dose of Covishield and are seeking to undertake international travel. Their planned travel dates fall prior to completion of the currently mandated minimum interval of 84 days from the date of the first dose. As a result, the Union Health Ministry has written to States/UTs to facilitate the vaccination of such individuals. The Ministry on Monday issued some standard operating procedures (SOPs) regarding this matter which have been conveyed to all States/UTs.
Currently, based on the recommendations by the National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for Covid-19 (NEGVAC), the schedule of Covishield vaccine under the National Covid-19 Vaccination Strategy is to administer the 2nd dose at an interval of 12-16 weeks (i.e. after 84 days), after the administration of the first dose.
The central government has said that the States/UT governments will be designating a competent authority in each district for giving permission for such administration of the second dose of the Covishield vaccine.
According to the central government, it is mentioned that vaccination might be availed in cases through one’s passport because as per the current guidelines is one of the permissible ID documents. Therefore, the passport number will be printed on the Certificate. If the passport was not used at the time of the first dose’s administration, the details of the photo ID Card used for vaccination will be printed in the vaccination certificate and mention of the passport in the vaccination certificate will not be compulsory. Wherever it is necessary, the competent authority may issue another certificate that links the vaccination certificate with the passport number of the beneficiary.