“We can do much better and very quickly,” the senior Congress leader said.
Five ways to control COVID-19 spread
Publicise COVID-19 vaccine orders
“The government should publicise what are the firms orders for doses placed on different vaccine producers are accepted for delivery over the next six months. If we want to vaccinate a target number in this period, we should place enough order in advance so that producers can adhere to the agreed schedule of supply,” former PM Manmohan Singh said in the letter.
Indicate about the vaccine distribution process
“The government should indicate how this expected to supply will be distributed across the states based on a transparent formula. The central government retains 10 percent for distribution based on emergency needs, but other than that, the states should have a clear signal of likely availability so that they can plan their rollout,” he said in his letter to PM Modi.
Allow states to define frontline workers
Former PM Manmohan Singh also suggested the government allow the state government to vaccinate frontline workers below 45 years of age. He also advised the government to allow the state to define the frontline workers.
“For example, the state may want to designate school teachers, bus, and three-wheelers and taxi-drivers, municipal and panchayat staff and possibly lawyers who have to attend courts as the frontline workers. They can then be vaccinated even if they’re below 45,” he said.
Help vaccine makers to increase production
“I believe this is the time to invoke the compulsory licensing provisions in the law, so that a number of the companies are able to produce the vaccines under a license. This, I recall, had happened earlier in the case of medicines to deal with the HIV/AIDS disease,” he said.
Allow import of all approved vaccines
“Since domestic supplies are limited, any vaccine that has been cleared for the use by credible authorities such as the European Medical Agency, or the USFDA, should be allowed to be imported without insisting domestic bridging trials,” he said.