The government has started inoculating tourism workers in the valley from today.

A version of this article appears in the print on April 07, 2021, of The Himalayan Times.

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According to the Department of Health Services, tourism stakeholders can get vaccinated over the next five days (till April 11). Tourist Guide Association (TUR- GAN), Nepal Tourist Vehicle Association (NTVA), Hotel Association Nepal (HAN) and Trekking Agencies Association of Nepal (TAAN) have started to vaccinate frontline service providers of their members/member agencies.

The stakeholders can get vaccinated with the recommendation letter from their company or related association.

The vaccination is being conducted at 14 places within the valley.

According to the department, vaccination service is being provided at Bir Hospital in Kantipath, Paropakar Maternity and Women's Hospital in Thapathali, Shukraraaj Tropical and Infectious Disease Hospital in Teku, Civil Hospital in New Baneshwor, Kirtipur Hospital in Kirtipur, Nepal Medical College in Jorpati, Kathmandu Medical College in Sinamangal, Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital in Maharajgunj, Shahid Gangalal National Heart Centre in Bansbari, Birendra Sainik Hospital in Chhauni, Nepal APF Hospital in Balambu, Om Hospital and Research Centre in Chabahil, Nepal Police Hospital in Panipokhari and Chhetrapati Hospital in Chhetrapati.

"Getting inoculated at the start of tourism season will provide relief to the workers in the sector," said Sarita Lama, general secretary of TAAN. "TAAN, along with other tourism organisations, had been urging the government to prioritise tourism workers for COVID-19 vaccination campaign."

She further said that as the spring season has started, increasing number of tourists are travelling to Nepal.

Amid this, vaccinating tourism workers will make tourism activities more reliable for the tourists, she added.

"We are receiving phone calls from our members located out of the valley, urging us to take up their case with the government," she said.

The vaccination programme is currently limited to the valley.

Along with tourism workers, the government is also providing vaccines to workers engaged in internet sector, people working in pharmacies, along with fruits and vegetables traders.

A meeting held at the Ministry of Health and Population on Tuesday had decided to provide vaccine against covid-19 infection for the aforementioned entrepreneurs and workers between the ages of 18 and 59.

A version of this article appears in the print on April 08, 2021, of The Himalayan Times.