- Vi, Airtel Thanks and MyJio apps let users find their nearest vaccination centre
- While Jio and Airtel already had the vaccine finder tool, Vi added it recently
- These tools let users filter searches by age group, vaccine type, dose number, and more
The Indian government is conducting what is probably the biggest COVID vaccination drive in the world at the moment. Anyone in the country above the age of 18 years can go ahead and get jabbed at the COVID vaccination centres nearby. However, unlike the 45+ age group, those in the 18-44 age bracket can’t just walk in to get vaccinated. They need to find the nearest vaccination centre first and then pre-register for the dose.
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In case you’re wondering how to find vaccination centres near you, there are multiples ways to check nearby centres and the availability of slots there. Users can simply head to the CoWIN portal or use Whatsapp to find out details. In this article, we will walk you through the process of searching nearby vaccination centres and the various methods to do so.
What are the vaccines currently available in India?
As of now, there are three vaccines available in India – Covaxin, Covishield, and Sputnik V. Starting with Covaxin, it is developed by Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech International Limited in collaboration with ICMR and the National Institute of Virology. However, the vaccine is yet to be approved by WHO, which means it’s not recognised internationally. The vaccine is developed using a whole-virion inactivated Vero cell divide platform technology. The recommended gap between two doses of Covaxin is four to six weeks.
Next up is Covishield, which is what the AstraZeneca vaccine is called in India. Manufactured locally by the Serum Institute of India, this particular made-in-India vaccine is recognised by WHO and gives inoculated individuals the freedom to travel abroad. Covishield is manufactured using a viral vector platform – a chimpanzee adenovirus called ChAdOx1, which has been modified to carry the coronavirus SPIKE protein into human cells. This helps the body develop immunity against the virus. The government of India has set the gap between two doses of Covishield to 12 -16 weeks.
The Sputnik V vaccine is the more recent addition to India’s vaccine dossiers. The Russian vaccine is devices using human adenoviral vectors, which have been around for a long time. This vaccine makes use of two different vectors for the two shots and provides longer immunity against the coronavirus. The vaccine is currently available in Hyderabad, Delhi, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Chennai, Visakhapatnam, Baddi, Kolhapur, and Miryalaguda. The two doses of the Sputnik vaccine are to be administered with a gap of 21 days.
The Serum Institute of India is also working on manufacturing a vaccine called Novavax, developed by Novavax, a US-based biotechnology company. The vaccine called NVX-CoV2373 or Novavax is the first to pass phase 3 clinical trials and is also effective against COVID-19 variants. The vaccine is speculated to be made available by September this year. Novavax also needs 21 days gap between two doses as recommended by experts.
How to find the nearest vaccination centre?
Finding the nearest vaccination centre has always been easy through the CoWIN portal. However, the government has launched the MyGov Corona Helpdesk on WhatsApp to make it even more convenient for citizens. Additionally, platforms like MapmyIndia, Google Maps, Paytm, and more have come up with their own tools to find the nearest vaccination centre. Moreover, CoWIN website now mentions that on-spot registrations and walk-in vaccinations are now available for 18+ age group as well, which makes it very convenient for everyone. You can find the nearest vaccine centre and simply walk in. Let’s go over all these methods one by one.
Vi Vaccine Slot Finder
Vi has introduced a vaccine slot finder tool powered by CoWIN in its app. Vi users can search available vaccine slots and set alerts on the app itself. Additionally, users can book slots from within the app itself. Here’s how you can check for vaccine slots on the Vi app.
- Open Vi app on your smartphone
- Scroll down to the horizontal scroll bar
- Navigate to the banner saying “Get yourself vaccinated today“
- Choose your pin code or district
- On the next page, apply relevant filters
- Click on available slot and the app will direct you to CoWIN too book slot
WhatsApp MyGov Corona Helpdesk
WhatsApp is probably the easiest method to find the nearest vaccination centre. The MyGov Corona Helpdesk also provides useful COVID-19 information including the latest updates, things to know, and more. Follow the steps below to use WhatsApp MyGov Corona Helpdesk chatbot.
- Open WhatsApp on your smartphone
- Tap on the new chat button in the bottom right corner
- Select ‘New Contact’ and save 9013151515 under MyGoV Corona Helpdesk name
- Start a new chat with the chatbot by saying ‘Hi’
- You’ll receive an automated response with an elaborate menu
- Send ‘2’ to select ‘Vaccination Centres and FAQs’
- Next, send ‘1’ to select ‘COVID Vaccination – Centres Related Information’
- Next, you’ll be asked to provide your 6-digit pincode
- Once you send your Pin Code, you’ll be sent the list of the vaccination centres close to your location
The CoWIN portal has a universal search bar for the nearest vaccination center and slots available on the home page itself. You need not even login to be able to search the nearest vaccination center. Here are the steps to use CoWIN to find the vaccination centre closest to you.
- Go to the CoWIN portal
- Scroll down till you see the search box
- In the search box, press current location or enter your address
- Click ‘Search’
- You will see the nearest vaccination centers to you
- You can click on ‘Get Directions’ to further get exact turn-by-turn directions to the center
Google Maps also introduced a handy tool to find nearby vaccination centres on the app. Not only can users search for nearby centres but also navigate using Google Maps. Here are the steps to use the vaccine finder tool in Google Maps.
- Open Google Maps on your smartphone
- Search ‘COVID Vaccination centres near me’
- Google Maps will show you a list of centres
- The app will also show you total distance from your location, availability, documents required, and more
- You can simply choose the centre of your choice and start navigating
For 18-44 age group, there’s no walk-in vaccination facility, so make sure you register before heading to the vaccination centre.
MapmyIndia has also introduced a vaccination centre finder tool on its platform. It’s as easy as clicking on a button on the MapmyIndia website. Follow the steps below to use MapmyIndia to find nearby vaccination centres.
- Download MapmyIndia app or visit MapmyIndia website
- On the website, simply click on Vaccination Centres in the top-left corner
- In the app, press current location or enter your address
- You will see the nearest vaccination centers to you
- You can click on ‘Get Directions’ to further get exact turn-by-turn directions
Paytm Vaccine Finder tool
Paytm has a handy vaccine slot finder tool on its platform to let users find vaccine slot availability as well as nearby vaccination centres. Users can now even book slots directly from the app itself, which is pretty convenient. Here are the steps to find nearby vaccination centres using Paytm.
- Open Paytm app on your smartphone
- Scroll down to the ‘Featured’ section
- Tap on the ‘Vaccine Finder’ option
- Enter your pin code or select your district
- Choose between 18+ and 45+ age groups
- Select ‘Check Availability to see open slots’
- The app will now show you nearby vaccination centres in your area and available slots
MyJio Vaccine Finder tool
Jio recently launched a new Vaccine Finder tool in its MyJio app. This tool lets users easily find COVID-19 vaccination slots in nearby areas and find slots according to age, doses, and vaccine type. Here’s how to use the MyJio app vaccine finder tool.
- Open the MyJio app on your phone
- Scroll down till you see the COVID-19 vaccine finder banner and tap on it
- Enter your pin code or district
- The app will now show you available slots at the nearest government and private vaccination centres
VaccinateMe by HealthifyMe
VaccinateMe is a handy online tool launched by HealthifyMe, which lets users locate nearby centres and also look for available slots. Users can search for slots based on Dose 1 or Dose 2 and the type of vaccine. Follow the steps below to use VaccinateMe tool.
- Go to the VaccinateMe website
- Click on either ‘District’ or ‘Pincode’
- Next, select your district or enter pincode
- Select relevant dose (Dose 1 or Dose 2)
- The website will then show you slot availability at nearby vaccination centres
The Under45.in is a unique platform as it’s meant for those who are on Telegram and as the name suggests, is meant for those in 18-44 age bracket. Here’s how you can use this service.
- Make sure you have Telegram installed on your phone
- Open the web browser on your phone and visit under45.in
- Pick your State and District from the dropdowns
- The page will now show you a relevant Telegram channel
- Tap on the channel name and it will redirect you to Telegram app
- Click on ‘Join’ button to receive notifications from that channel