COVID Vaccine, Jan 16: The COVID19 vaccination drive began in West Bengal on Saturday morning, with a doctor of a private hospital receiving the first shot.

Raja Chowdhury, a group D worker at SSKM hospital, Kolkata is the first person who got inoculated in the state.

I feel amazing after this vaccination. A security guard has checked by temperature and sanitization has been done. Then I registered myself and my ID card has been checked. I was sitting in a waiting room after that I got a vaccine dose,” Chowdhury said.

West Bengal’s Minister of State for Labour Nirmal Maji also received the Covishield vaccine at the Kolkata Medical College and Hospital, the officials said.

The vaccination program started at 210 session sites, including medical colleges, urban primary healthcare centres, and a few private hospitals.

I am feeling proud of myself as I am the first person to accept the vaccine in Kolkata. Everyone should be aware of this. Nothing to worry about“, Raja added.

Kolkata has been allocated the highest number of Covid19 vaccines in West Bengal, at 93,500, for the first phase of the vaccination drive.

North 24 Parganas district has been allocated the second-highest number of Covid vaccines at 47,000, followed by Murshidabad at 37,500. West Bengal has been allocated 6, 44,500 vaccines for the first phase of the drive.

Five walk-in-coolers (WICs) and four walk-in-freezers (WIFs) have been installed at the Bagbazar store for stockpiling 6.89 lakh vials, which would be dispatched to 941 centres across Bengal.

A cold chain is a temperature-controlled unit, where handlers are responsible for the storage and preservation of vaccines for immunizations and last-mile delivery. There are 25-40 cold chain centres in each Bengal district where vaccines such as polio or tuberculosis are preserved. Maintaining the required temperature range of 2-8 degrees Celsius while storing and transporting the vaccine is important.