On Monday, Ram Govind Chaudhary, the opposition leader in the UP Legislative Assembly, had asked the Yogi Adityanath government to explain why the vaccine is not being provided free of cost as promised by the Centre earlier.
During a discussion in the state assembly, the senior Samajwadi Party leader had sought to know from the state’s Health Minister Jai Pratap Singh if the COVID vaccine will be provided free of cost to the public or some charges will be taken for the same.
Chaudhary was backed by other opposition leaders like Manoj Kumar Pandey (SP), Ajai Kumar of Congress, and BSP MLAs Uma Shankar Singh and Virendra Yadav. They had also demanded an explanation from the state government over the fee being charged for administering the COVID vaccine to those above 45 years of age and with comorbidities.
Replying to them, UP Health Minister Jai Pratap Singh said that as per the Centre’s guidelines, the COVID vaccine is being provided free of cost to the frontline health workers only.
“The Union Health Ministry has reiterated that all COVID vaccines will be provided to beneficiaries at the government health facilities free of cost, while private facilities cannot charge the beneficiary a sum above Rs 250 per person per dose (Rs 150 for vaccines and Rs 100 as operational charges), ‘’ the UP Health Minister said.
He also cited the Centre’s guideline that the private hospitals will have to remit the cost of vaccine doses allotted to them in a designated account of the National Health Authority (NHA). The NHA enables the payment gateway for the same on their website, the Health Ministry order said.