Pradeep Angre, dean of the Mulund facility, said the turnout was more encouraging in this round. "On most days, we were administering doses to 30-40 healthcare or frontline workers. Today, already over 50 senior citizens have been given the jab and more are waiting."
Dilip Jose, MD and CEO of Manipal Hospitals, said the enthusiasm was very high and a lot of people reached out to enquire how they could get registered. At Manipal’s flagship hospital in Bengaluru, the first dose was administered to a 97-year-old man.
The dean at the Rajiv Gandhi Hospital, Chennai, said that in the first one hour, over a 100 people had registered.
The only dampener was the technical glitches on the Co-WIN app and confusion over walk-in.
“The response has been huge. Many senior citizens turned up, but not all had registered, and some did not have proper documentation,” said Rupak Barua, director and group CEO, AMRI Hospitals.
The hospital had been allowed to vaccinate 50 beneficiaries each at its two units including 30 senior citizens and 20 from the age group of 45-59 today.
Beneficiaries have an option between pre-booking slots on the app and walk-in registration. However, in Bengaluru, there will be no walk-ins for the first week; in Tamil Nadu, Gujarat and West Bengal, walk-in registrations have been allowed.
Maharashtra health department along with the Mumbai civic body are holding meetings with hospitals to gauge their infrastructure and willingness. The enrollments will be done accordingly.
Even as the upgraded Co-WIN was launched, technical glitches continued and many places got off to a late start.
At the BKC Covid centre, officials had to register details regarding allotment before administering doses and were unable to complete the process. While on-spot registrations began after 9 am, actual vaccination began only after 11 am. At Bengaluru, too, vaccination was to start at noon but could not be rolled out before 2pm.
At state-run SSKM Hospital in Kolkata, the portal ran into a problem and beneficiaries for the second dose were made to wait. Registration on multiple platforms have been allowed, but that too didn't seem to resolve the problem.
"We had already registered through the municipal corporation's website a couple of months ago before the vaccination drive began but no intimation was received on the same,” said Nishit Joshi, 39, who was registering his father (65) and mother (62) for the third phase of vaccination.
“Today, we tried to register on the Aarogya Setu, but till noon there was no option to register. After noon, when the option was visible on the app, we were unable to register as the server got busy," he added.
Suneeta Reddy, MD, Apollo Hospitals, said she expected the process to smooth out in 2-3 weeks. Reddy has also asked the government to extend the hours for vaccination from eight to 12-14.