“With the start of India’s biggest Covid-19 vaccination campaign, leveraging the infrastructure and capabilities of private healthcare players can certainly help accelerate the mass vaccination delivery to people”.
Recently India has launched its largest and most complex vaccine inoculation program. With over 130+ crore people to be inoculated, there are several challenges for the government to supply, manage, and administer the vaccination campaign given the skewed health infrastructure over urban and rural areas. According to the Union Budget 2021, the central government has allocated Rs. 35,000 crore for immunisation of Covid vaccines.

The Role of Private Healthcare Players in Vaccine Management

The entry of private healthcare players to support and augment the government’s vaccination program can accelerate the delivery and distribution more effectively and efficiently. FICCI in participation with EY has submitted a strategy paper to Govt. Of India highlighting the support, private healthcare players can provide to accelerate and manage the vaccination campaign.
Recent reports suggest that the government requires 1.3-1.4 lakh vaccine centers, 1 lakh phlebotomists, and 2.0 lakh volunteers to support the mass-inoculation program. Given the details, the private healthcare players responsible for over 70% of health delivery can adequately supply the required resources to drive the campaign successfully.

Key Resources that Private Players Possess to Accelerate the Vaccine Campaign

  1. Storage, Logistics, and Distribution
    • With an established distribution eco-system, private healthcare players can provide state of art storage facilities, freight vehicles, and distribution warehouses with the required healthcare IT technology.
    • They can create essential operating procedures on inventory & material management, fraud management with safety protocols and train the existing workforce on the same.
    • With concrete supply chain management, the end to end operations and maintenance of storage facilities, freight movement and assets (including both private and government-owned) can be tracked and monitored.
  2. Infrastructure and Workforce
    • 80% of private health centers have earmarked inoculation facilities with in-house cold storage units to deliver the doses without any disruption.
    • 88% have trained inoculators available for vaccination, 70% are willing to allocate manpower in semi-urban/rural areas for vaccination and 94% are willing to impart inoculation training.
  1. Clinical Standards for Inoculation
    • About 80% of private healthcare labs have been accredited with agencies such as NABH and NABL for maintaining the lab standards.
    • Their digital platforms such as websites and mobile apps can be used to upload inoculation training modules to educate wider networks and associates.
  2. eVIN/ CoWIN Healthcare Technology Integrations Logistics tracking capabilities:
    • Real-time temperature tracking of their storage and transport delivery can remove vaccine temperature breaches and reduce contamination.
    Storage and distribution tracking capabilities:
    • Comprehensive system to integrate with eVIN (Electronic Vaccine Intelligence Network) to track vaccine stocks.
    Vaccine administration tracking capabilities:
    • Covid-19 mobile app facilitating both citizen and private entities with vaccine registration, slot booking, vaccine center management, vaccine payment management, authenticity verification, administered vaccination details.
    Patient management and tracking capabilities:
    • Data platform capabilities coupled with AI and Machine Learning to mine real-world data to assess the safety and efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines and adverse patient monitoring.
    • Deployment of blockchain for privacy and security of personal data.
    While Private Healthcare Players have the physical infrastructure to accelerate the vaccination drive, a seamless digital infrastructure that can work alongside the Government’s eVIN platform can support Government in this massive initiative. It is precisely in this area, robust healthcare platforms like Voila which is being used by top healthcare companies can be game-changing. Voila has superior capabilities for managing B2C, B2B, Home Healthcare operations and can be used by Government to manage Bulk vaccination drives amidst corporates, corporate-funded / NGO sponsored vaccination drives.