The nationwide three-day COVID-19 vaccination campaign ended on Thursday with 80, 70,999 people received second and booster doses.
"We have set a target of administering 75 lakh people with second and booster doses in the three-day campaign... we have crossed our target as 80,70,999 people received second and booster doses," " Dr Shamsul Haque, member secretary of the National Covid-19 Vaccine Management Task force, told BSS today.
"Initially, the vaccination campaign was a daylong programme....the authorities have extended the daylong COVID-19 vaccination campaign to three-day drive aiming to fulfill the target of administering 75 people to build a buffer against the deadly virus," the health service official added.
The government is focusing on expansion of booster dose coverage as the people particularly in rural areas are reluctant to receive booster dose, he said adding it is not a good sign for us when Bangladesh recorded a significant number of coronavirus cases almost every day over the past one month.
On the first day of the campaign, nearly 60 lakh were inoculated with second and booster dose of coronavirus vaccines, 13 lakh on second day while around eight lakh were inoculated on the concluding day of the drive, Haque added.
The three-day nationwide Covid-19 vaccination campaign began on July 19 and it ended on July 21, he said such campaign will be conducted in future to motivate people for receiving vaccine, particularly booster dose, he added.
The campaign has been successful as people received second and booster dose from all designated centres set up across the country without any hassle, Haque added.
"We have considered the countrywide vaccination campaign as a successful one because we have been able to inoculate over 80 lakh people ," Haque said.
Haque said, in case of administering the first and second dose of the coronavirus vaccine, Bangladesh has made significant progress, which has acted as a shield to fight against COVID-19 pandemic.
"We have conducted a series of special vaccination campaigns, which virtually yielded good results in expansion of vaccination coverage. Now we want to increase booster dose coverage to prevent the outbreak of the coronavirus," he added.
The nationwide vaccination campaign was conducted for expanding booster dose coverage across the country to prevent the spread of coronavirus, the health ministry sources said.
"The people aged 18 and above received Covid-19 booster dose during the campaign ...They (eligible people) were inoculated booster dose after completing four months," it added.
At a press briefing on the eve of the campaign, Health Minister Zahid Maleque said as part of controlling the COVID-19 pandemic, the government has brought 76.05 percent people under first dose of vaccination coverage, 70.3 percent under second dose while 17.9 percent people have been brought under the booster dose coverage.
Bangladesh has been lauded globally for expansion of vaccination coverage which eventually has helped the countrymen to protect from the lethal virus, he said, adding, "Five types of vaccines -- Astrazeneca, Pfizer, Sinopharm, Sinovac and Janssen -- are now available in the country. We have 2.76 crore vaccines in stock."
The government set up 16,181 vaccination centres across the country, the health ministry said adding adding, "As many as 623 were permanent vaccination centres while 15,558 were set temporarily to conduct the nationwide campaign."
The health ministry sources said in order to inoculate targeted people, a total of 33,246 health workers performed their duties during the campaign while some 49,869 volunteers extended their services to make the vaccination drive a success.
Haque said vaccination centres were set up at all public hospitals, specialized hospitals, health complexes, city corporations, pouroshovas, upazila and union parishads.
Dr Ayesha Akhter, a physician of TB hospital at Shyamoli said, "People started gathering at our hospital from early hours during the three-day campaign."
"Those who have already received the first and second dose of COVID-19 vaccine should take the booster dose. As COVID-19 vaccination programme was launched last year. Now it is the right time to increase booster dose coverage to control the spread of the virus," she added.
As of July 20, a total of 28,71,63,521 doses of Covid-19 vaccines, including booster doses, were administered while the countrywide vaccination campaign was launched on February 7, last year.
"A total of 12,96,27,328 people were administered the first dose of Covid-19 vaccine till yesterday (Monday) while 12,01,95,106 received the second dose across the country during the period," according to a data issued by the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS).
As many as 3,73,41,087 people received booster doses of the vaccine to prevent the spread of the deadly virus, it added.
"A total of 3,34,37,247 students aged 12-17 years were vaccinated with first and second doses of the Covid-19 vaccines. Of them, 1,73,50,205 students received the first dose while 1,60,87,042 were immunized with the second dose of the jabs," the DGHS sources said.
Some 3,73,786 floating people have so far been inoculated across the country, the sources added.
"Till date, Bangladesh received over 30 crore doses of Covid-19 vaccines... Either the country got the vaccine doses under COVAX facilities or through purchase," the DGHS continued.
"The government has taken the decision to inoculate children aged between five and 12 years with Covid-19 vaccines after approval of the World Health Organization (WHO)... The country has a sufficient number of vaccines, which are eligible for the children," the health ministry sources said.
There are 2.20 crore children aged between five and 12 in the country, the ministry said, adding: "Registration is mandatory for them through "Surokkha App" for receiving the vaccine."
On November 1, 2021, the vaccination campaign for students, aged between 12 and 17, began at eight centers in Dhaka city. Afterwards, the campaign has been expanded across the country.