ACT 's Vaccine Implementation Plan
India is currently reeling under the second wave (which may soon morph into a third) and owing to severe supply constraints, is struggling to vaccinate its entire population resulting in severe costs in terms of both lives and livelihood. This is overwhelming the health system and threatening to significantly delay economic revival.
The government began the vaccination drive earlier this year rightfully focusing on prioritizing healthcare workers, the elderly, and populations with co-morbidities. With the on-set of the second wave at the end of March/ early April, the government also opened the same for all the eligible population – however, owing to shortages in supply, the rollout has been severely impacted leading to significant delays and limited solutions to address this in the short term.
As the country works towards addressing the supply issue through ramping up manufacturing of approved vaccines and approving newer vaccines, there is a strong need to ensure that the available supply is allocated in a fair and equitable manner towards populations that are most at risk of contracting the disease.
ACT’s mission in partnership with UWB and Sattva is to create a model that enables successful vaccination of vulnerable at-risk populations at an accelerated pace. ACT will use the next few weeks to demonstrate the same through targeted pilots and use the learnings to create playbooks that can be used by government administrations, CSRs and others to replicate in other geographies and enable rapid scale up.
Rationale for ACT’s city focus
ACT’s mission in partnership with UWB and Sattva is to create a model that enables successful vaccination of marginalized at-risk populations at an accelerated pace. ACT will use the next few weeks to demonstrate the same through targeted pilots and use the learnings to create playbooks that can be used by government administrations, CSRs and others to replicate in other geographies and enable rapid scale up.
Prioritisation within the selected cities
Keeping in mind the focus on equity, ACT will look at targeting vulnerable populations across two tracks within the focused geographies and the available pool of vaccine will be divided equally between the 2 tracks:
- high density-low income areas
- high risk occupational groups and other vulnerable groups
Track 1: Allocation for high density-low income areas
Step 1: Zone Prioritization
Parameter: Slum population in the zone.
Method: Bangalore is divided into 8 zones. For the first iteration, vaccines are divided in the ratio of the total slum population in each of the zones.
Rationale: Zonal priority has been taken into account for the first iteration to facilitate some coverage across all zones. Ward priority (mentioned below) is given preference for all iterations after the first to allow for distribution of vaccines based on actual risk.
Step 2: Ward Prioritization
Parameter: Population density in the ward.
Method: All the wards in Bangalore are ranked in order of their population density. The ward with the highest density is ranked 1.
Rationale: Population density is deemed to be the most important parameter in the transmission of virus as density is a common impediment to basic social distancing measures and increases the chances of contact.
Step 3: Slum Allocation
Parameter: Slum population in the ward.
Method: In each zone, the wards with the highest population density are identified. Vaccines are allocated to 70% of the slum population in these wards in an attempt to saturate these areas.
Rationale: This localised saturation is believed to be effective in cutting the chain of transmission.
Track 2: Allocation for high risk occupational groups and other vulnerable groups
This track includes organised and unorganised workers in the following indicative occupations:
- Construction workers
- Crematorium workers
- Delivery executives
- Domestic workers
- Drivers (truck, bus, auto cars)
- Kirana shops
- Mandi workers
- Milk vendors
- Restaurant staff
- Retailer and mall employees
- Security guards/ Housekeeping
- Sex workers
- Street vendors
- Warehouse and logistics staff
and other vulnerable groups like
Allocation Approach: All of these vulnerable groups will be given equal priority. Mobilization feasibility of a particular group to also be considered.
Implementation of the above prioritization will be driven by a Community Coalition encompassing public and private stakeholders such as private hospitals, NGOs, CSRs and facilitators such as ACT Grants and other social impact organisations. For example, partners such as Zomato and Swiggy will be leveraged to mobilise vaccinations for delivery personnel whereas partners such as Indian Oil will be leveraged to mobilise those working at gas stations.
1.1 Verification Process
Over and above the suggested verification process, other government databases (database containing details of underprivileged beneficiaries entitled to several schemes) available to verify one’s occupational details, can be explored in consultation with government, ACT and experts.
Slum population will be verified by BPL cards. Where BPL cards are not available, voter ID cards with slum location as address will be used as means of identification. An NGO will be leveraged to identify slum dwellers without IDs