No need to scramble for vaccine shots, book a slot via WhatsApp now

Union Health Ministry launched a new facility to book vaccine slots via WhatsApp making it easier for people to get vaccinated. These efforts are part of the government’s drive to get adults vaccinated by the end of this year

India has administered over 58.8 crore vaccine doses until now. Pic : Representational image PTI

The Union Health Ministry has launched an all-new facility to book vaccine slots through WhatsApp to make it easier for people to get vaccinated.

This is part of the government’s drive to ensure that all adults get vaccinated by the end of this year. In June this year, the Centre had assured the Supreme Court that it will fully inoculate the country’s over 94-crore 18 years plus population by the end of the year, said media reports.

This information on the new and easy process of booking COVID-19 vaccine slots was tweeted by no less than the Union health minister Mansukh Mandaviya on Tuesday (August 24) morning.

“Paving a new era of citizen convenience. Now, book COVID-19 vaccine slots easily on your phone within minutes,” he had tweeted. He also spelt out the steps to follow to book the slot through the app.

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“Send ‘Book Slot’ to MyGovIndia Corona Helpdesk on WhatsApp. Verify OTP. Follow the steps,” he added, even attaching the WhatsApp link to use.

After you key in the 6-digit OTP number you receive by SMS, choose your preferred date, location, pin code, and vaccine type and get a confirmation for your booking.

A NDTV report pointed out that earlier this month, the government had launched another facility which allowed people to get their vaccination certificate via WhatsApp. This service has been a boon to many people desperate to get vaccination proof from the CoWIN platform which often battles with glitches.

Amid anxiety over a third wave, vaccination certificates have become necessary for inter-state travel, for entering certain social places like clubs and for a plethora of reasons as well.

To acquire a vaccination certificate, all a person has to do is apply for it in three steps through the MyGov Corona Helpdesk. The contact number: +91 9013151515 is given, and the person has to just type in send ‘COVID certificate’ on WhatsApp. An OTP has to be entered and the person gets the certificate.

Meanwhile, India has also approved its sixth vaccine, Zydus Cadila’s ZyCoV-D for adults and children aged 12 years. The company has issued a statement that it hopes to produce one crore doses per month by October.

Currently, India has administered over 58.8 crore vaccine doses until now. States like Tamil Nadu are also pushing to boost vaccination by offering round-the-clock vaccination services at government colleges and hospitals from next week to make it easier for people to take COVID-19 shots at their convenience, said an India Today report.

The health ministry’s latest data showed that India recorded 25,072 new COVID-19 cases and 389 deaths in the past 24 hours, taking its tally to 32,449,306 and the death toll to 434,756.

COVID-19 is continuing to spread around the world, the US remains the worst-hit country with 38,231,787 cases, followed by India, Brazil, Russia and France.

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