As a part of the preparations to start a nationwide Covid-19 vaccination programme in the first week of February, the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) has been training healthcare professionals.
Dr Shamsul Haque, member secretary of the Covid-19 Vaccine Management Taskforce, told The Business Standard, "Currently, the healthcare professionals at the district level are being trained. Later, they will train vaccinators across the country."
Around 40,000 health workers, field workers of different NGOs and volunteers at different levels will receive training till the last week of this month.
In addition to receiving general information about Covid-19, they will receive training on how to run a vaccine centre, how to administer vaccines and what to do in case of side effects from the vaccines.
The World Health Organization, Unicef, USAID, and some other development agencies are assisting in the training programme.
Dr Shamsul Haque said an app to register the vaccine receivers is almost finished. Registration through the app is supposed to start on 26 January.
The DGHS said fifty lakh doses of the vaccine will arrive from the Serum Institute of India between 21 and 25 January and will be kept in Beximco warehouses for two days. The health directorate is expected to receive the vaccine doses on 27 January.
Selected frontline volunteers and health workers of a hospital will be jabbed first and they will be under observation for the next seven days. Countrywide immunisation will begin in the first week of February.
The government will set up 7,500 vaccination centres in all health facilities across the country.
There will also be 7,344 teams for vaccinating people. Each group will comprise two health workers – a nurse and a sub assistant community medical officer – and four volunteers.
Some 100-150 people will be vaccinated at each centre each day. Moreover, there will be arrangements to counter possible adverse side-effects of the shot.
There will be a committee at district, upazila and union levels to monitor any adverse reaction to the Covid-19 vaccine – whether mild or severe.
Previously, on 5 November, 2020, Bangladesh's health ministry signed a tripartite memorandum of understanding with the Serum Institute of India and Beximco Pharmaceuticals Ltd to import the Oxford vaccine.