People with disabilities left out of Covid-19 vaccination driveAlthough the government has decided to inoculate people with disabilities, vaccines are not accessible to all in the target group.
The government has decided to provide Janssen Covid-19 vaccines to people with disabilities. However, the vaccine is not accessible to all in the target group.
Fifty-five-year-old Tokalal Khadka of Sharada Municipality Ward 7 was born with paralysis in both his hands and legs. He has been deprived of the Covid-19 vaccine, as the government has not facilitated a door-to-door campaign for the disabled.
“We cannot walk to the vaccination centre by ourselves. Not all of us have family members to carry us around. The government should manage alternative methods to vaccinate people like us,” said Khadka.
Similarly, Parimal Pariyar of Bangadkupinde Municipality, a disabled person, has also been left out from the Covid-19 vaccination programme.
“I cannot walk to the vaccination centre. That’s why I am yet to receive my Covid-19 jab,” Pariyar said.
Around 5,000 disabled people in Salyan have been deprived of Covid-19 vaccines, officials say.
“Four disabled people in our ward have been unable to receive the Covid-19 vaccine. We had reached the municipal office in Khalanga demanding that the disabled be vaccinated at their doorsteps. The municipality has not taken any initiative towards it,” said Sukalal Khadka, a resident of Sharada Municipality Ward No. 7.
Fifty-five-year-old Resham Bahadur Roka of Kalimati Rural Municipality Ward No. 6 is blind. He says the local unit has not yet managed Covid-19 vaccines for disabled people like him.
“Disabled people do not get proper health services. None of the vaccination centres in the district is disabled-friendly,” Roka said.
The District Health Office in Salyan was supposed to provide Janssen Covid-19 vaccines to the disabled people from Wednesday.
“But very few have received the vaccine so far,” said Krishna Budhathoki, chairman of the Disabled Welfare Association in Salyan.
According to the data of the association, there are around 6,000 individuals living with disabilities in Salyan.
“Around 2,000 of them fall under A and B category, physical disabilities that limit movement, speech and others,” said Budhathoki. “Until now, hardly 500 disabled people have received Vero Cell vaccines in the district. Around 5,000 are still left out.”
According to him, people with disabilities cannot walk to the vaccination centres and the local units have done nothing to ease the vaccination process for them.
“The association has also submitted a memorandum at the District Administration Office demanding that the authorities inoculate the disabled at their doorsteps,” said Budhathoki.
Meanwhile, Thalaraj DC, information officer at the District Health Office in Salyan, says his office is collecting the list of recipients from various local units of Salyan.
“Janssen vaccines will be brought to the district within a week. We will start the inoculation drive soon,” DC said.
Chief District Officer of Salyan Laxmidevi Humagain agrees with DC. According to Humagain, the district office has requested the local units to manage health workers to provide door-to-door vaccination services to the disabled people at the earliest.