Migrant workers line up at Teku hospital to collect certificates of vaccinationThe government had started administering J&J’s Janssen vaccine to migrant workers after major labour destinations made it mandatory for incoming migrant workers to be vaccinated.
Vaccinated migrant workers preparing to head towards various labour destinations queued up at Teku Hospital in the Capital on Thursday to collect their vaccination certificates.
Among them were also those who are yet to be vaccinated.
The hospital administration, following Health Ministry’s July 19 decision to start inoculating migrant workers with the Johnson & Johnson-made vaccine, announced to administer the single-shot Janssen vaccine to people above 18 years of age.
The single-shot vaccine is also being given to disabled persons, refugees living in Nepal, and health officials and sanitation workers at health facilities
The lack of proper management of the inoculation drive at the hospital created Thursday’s overcrowding and flouting of health standards by vaccine hopefuls and those waiting for their vaccination certificates.
The government had started administering J&J’s Janssen vaccine to migrant workers after major labour destinations made it mandatory for incoming migrant workers to be vaccinated.
Those who have been vaccinated can travel abroad after 14 days of their jabs.
Sujit Kumar Shrestha, general secretary at Nepal Association of Foreign Employment Agencies, said Gulf countries like Qatar and Saudi Arabia have allowed exemption from quarantine rules for vaccinated migrant workers carrying their vaccination certificates issued by authorities in their home countries.
However, a QR code identification is mandatory on vaccination certificates to qualify for quarantine exemption.
According to Dr Jhalak Gautam, head of the National Immunisation Programme, the recently issued vaccination certificates do not have a QR code system which could lead to migrant workers facing financial challenges in their host nations.
Staying at a quarantine facility in Qatar costs anywhere between QR2,800 and QR3,200 equivalent to NPR100,000, a cost most migrant workers may not be able to afford.
Here are some photos of people queuing up at the Teku Hospital to collect vaccination certificates taken by Post’s photographer Angad Dhakal.