Currently, based on the recommendations by the National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for COVID-19 (NEGVAC), the time interval between the two doses of the Covishield vaccine is at 12-16 weeks that is 84 days; and the second dose must be administered after at least 28 days.

However, after several applications, the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, in a statement, announced who all can take the second dose of Covishield before 84 days and after 28 days.

The special dispensation of the vaccine will be available to the following beneficiaries.

-Students who have to undertake foreign travel for the purposes of education.

-Persons who have to take up jobs in foreign countries.

-Athletes, Sportspersons and accompanying staff of Indian contingent attending International Olympic Games to be held in Tokyo.

The competent authority shall check the following before according permission for the administration of the second dose before the period of 84 days after the date of the first dose:

-Whether a period of 28 days has elapsed after the date of the first dose.

-Genuineness of the purpose of travel based on documents related to

(a) Admission offers or associated formal communications for the purpose of education.

(b) Whether a person is already studying in a foreign educational institution and has to return to that institution for continuing his/her education.

(c) Interview calls for a job or offer letters for taking up employment

(d) Nomination to participate in the Tokyo Olympic Games.

The official order further stated that these SOPs have been issued specifically only for Covishield. Since the period for COVAXIN remained the same at 4-6 weeks there was no need for any special dispensation.