The Sindh government is set to vaccinate children in the age group of five to 11 years against Covid-19 from September 19 to September 24 with the first million doses being administered in Karachi, it emerged on Tuesday.

The decision was taken at a meeting of the steering committee on Covid-19 vaccines headed by Sindh Health Minister Dr Azra Pechuho. It was also attended by Secretary Health Zulfiqar Shah, Parliamentary Secretary Health Qasim Siraj Soomro, World Health Organisation (WHO) representative Dr Sara Salman, and the head of the Sindh Expanded Programme on Immunisation, Dr Irshad Memon, among others.

According to a press release issued by the provincial health department, the meeting was told about the strategy to administer pediatric Covid vaccine among children.

It said that Covid morbidity and mortality in the 5-11 year demographic had been identified in eight high prevalence districts, monitored from March 2020 to August 2022.

“These districts are namely Karachi Central, East, Korangi, Malir, Karachi South, West, Kemari and Hyderabad,” the department said.

It pointed out that to cover 70 per cent children in these high prevalence districts, 3.4 million doses Covid vaccines would be administered in phases. The first million doses will be administered in Karachi.

“Technical assistants at sites of the vaccine administration will record the name, age, gender, Form-B ID of the inoculated child, as well as the CNIC and contact number of the parent/guardian accompanying the child.”

During the meeting, Dr Pechuho said that apart from schools, children would be administered the shots in markets and parks.

The press released said that of meetings of all the sub committees at provincial and district levels are ongoing and a provincial steering committee on the plan of action for the campaign would be held twice a month.

Furthermore, provincial monitors would be visiting sites to verify vaccines and reporting tools till the September 3.

“Doctors will also be oriented on AEFI management for the pediatric Covid vaccine on September 12 and the communication material will be provided to the districts on the September 8,” the department added.

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