About 92% people who tried using Co-WIN portal faced difficulties: Survey

In a separate survey Local Circles said it also found that the Prime Minister Narendra Modi taking the jab, helped to reduce the vaccine hesitancy to 36 percent.

March 02, 2021 / 09:53 AM IST
Vaccination drive is underway in India since January 16 (Image: Reuters)

Vaccination drive is underway in India since January 16 (Image: Reuters)


Most people who have tried to book appointments for the COVID-19 vaccine through Co-WIN portal have faced difficulties on day one, according to a survey conducted by the community social platform LocalCircles.

The survey said around 92 percent of those who tried to register for COVID-19 vaccination through Co-WIN had difficulty with only 8 percent were able to register on Day 1.

Read More: Co-WIN: Minor glitches mar registrations as COVID-19 vaccination drive for general public kicks off

The survey received over 14,000 responses from citizens located in 221 districts of India.

On March 1, the government expanded the nationwide COVID-19 vaccination drive to include all citizens above the age of 60 and those over age 45 with comorbidities. For the first time, they opened the Co-WIN portal for self-registration and advance booking of slots for vaccination.

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COVID-19 Vaccine

Frequently Asked Questions

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How does a vaccine work?

A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.

How many types of vaccines are there?

There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.

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The vaccine registration became available from 9 am onwards on March 1, the reasonable price announced through private hospitals and Prime Minister Narendra Modi taking the vaccine led to a large number of people hitting the Co-WIN sites and apps for registering for the vaccine.

"As people attempted to do so, LocalCircles started seeing hundreds of posts and comments from across the country about several glitches they faced,"

Taking cognizance of these citizen reports, LocalCircles said it conducted a survey in an attempt to quantify the problem.

About 13 percent complained that they failed to access the site or app, 50 percent said OTP/SMS registration didn’t work, 29 percent said registration worked but no appointments were available. Only 8 percent of citizens said they were able to book the appointments successfully.

Dismissing the "rumours" of technical glitches in the Co-WIN platform, RS Sharma, Chairman of Empowered Group on Vaccine Administration (Co-WIN), on March 1 said the confusion was created by spreading misinformation that vaccination registration is being done through a mobile application.

There were rumours that people who want to book an appointment for COVID-19 vaccination should register on the Co-WIN app instead of Co-WIN website.
Meanwhile, the National Health Authority (NHA), the implementing agency of Co-WIN clarified that the registration for the vaccine is taking place only through the Aarogya Setu app and Co-WIN’s portal cowin.gov.in.

Speaking to ANI, RS Sharma CEO of NHA said, "There has been no glitch right from the start. What happened was that some people spread the misinformation that there is a Co-WIN app. So, people started searching for an app that is not ours. That is why there was some confusion among the people. After clarifying there is no Co-WIN app, we have given an extension in the Aarogya Setu app for registration and provided a portal.

Read More: Co-WIN app meant only for administrators, vaccine registration to be done through portal: Govt

Here's a quick guide on how to register for COVID-19 vaccination using the Co-WIN portal

PM Modi taking jab helps reduce vax hesitancy

In a separate survey, Local Circles said it also found that Prime Minister Narendra Modi taking the jab, helped to reduce the vaccine hesitancy to 36 percent. A similar survey released on February 19 this year pointed out that the vaccine was at 50 percent.

This survey received 7,797 responses.

About 7 percent of the people polled in the survey have said they have taken one or both doses, 17 percent said they will be taking the vaccine very soon, 40 percent said they will be taking the vaccine as soon as it becomes available to them. About 15 percent of citizens said they will wait up to 3 months, 7 percent said they will wait 6 or more months and then decide.There were also 7 percent of citizens who said they will not take the vaccine at all, while 7 percent didn't say anything.
Viswanath Pilla is a business journalist with 14 years of reporting experience. Based in Mumbai, Pilla covers pharma, healthcare and infrastructure sectors for Moneycontrol.
first published: Mar 2, 2021 09:53 am

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