The Union health ministry has reduced the gap between the second and precaution dose of COVID-19 vaccine for all beneficiaries from nine to six months following a recommendation by National Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (NTAGI).
Corresponding changes have been made in the CoWIN system to facilitate the new vaccine regimen.
In a letter to states and Union Territories, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan on Wednesday said the revision was made following a recommendation of the Standing Technical Sub-Committee of the NTAGI which was arrived at keeping in view the evolving scientific evidence and global practices.
The recommendation has also been endorsed by NTAGI, Bhushan said.
'Therefore, it has now been decided that the precaution dose for all beneficiaries from 18-59 years will be administered after completion of six months or 26 weeks from the date of administration of the second dose at Private Covid Vaccination Centres.
"For beneficiaries aged above 60 years and above as well as the healthcare and frontline workers, precaution dose would be administered after completion of six months or 26 weeks from the date of administration of the second dose at government CVCs, free of charge,' Bhushan said.
Instructions in this regard may be issued to all the officials concerned and it may also be publicized widely, the Union health secretary said.
'I look forward to your support and leadership for extending the benefits of the precaution dose to all due beneficiaries at Covid vaccination centres as well as household level during the ongoing Har Ghar Dastak 2.0 campaign,' he said in the letter addressed to chief secretaries and administrators of all states and Union Territories.