The feature to book online slots for a “precautionary dose” of COVID-19 vaccine, through the government’s CoWIN platform, was enabled on January 8.
The precautionary dose, which will be the third dose of an approved COVID-19 vaccine, will be administered from January 10 onwards.
“The feature for online appointments for Precaution Dose for HCWs/FLWs and Citizens (60+) is now live on Co-WIN. To book an appointment, please visit http://cowin.gov.in,” tweeted IAS officer Vikas Sheel, who is the Mission Director of Centre’s National Health Mission.
As per the details shared by the government last month, all frontline and healthcare workers, along with the 60-plus population with comorbidities will be eligible for the additional jab. However, a minimum time period of 39 weeks should have lapsed since the date when the second dose was administered to them.
Those eligible for the precautionary dose are not required to register themselves again on the CoWIN portal or app, the Union health ministry clarified earlier in the day. They can either use the platform to book vaccination slots, or directly walk in at the vaccination centres to receive the jab.
Earlier this week, Niti Aayog member (health) Dr VK Paul dismissed speculations that the government may allow mix-and-match usage of vaccines for the precautionary dose.
“Precautionary COVID-19 vaccine dose will be the same vaccine as has been given previously. Those who have received Covaxin will receive Covaxin, those who have received primary two doses of Covishield will receive Covishield,” Dr VK Paul said, during the Union health ministry’s press briefing on January 5.
Notably, the decision to administer the third dose, also referred to as booster shots in other countries, was taken amid an uptick in COVID-19 cases across the nation. The fresh spike is considered to have been triggered by the highly contagious Omicron variant of coronavirus.