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16-fold rise in online search for Covid vaccination centres from Oct to Dec: Just Dial report

Consumer insight by online directory service shows search for testing centres grew by 47% just before current surge in cases, 85% of all queries were for local pharmacies.

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New Delhi: Amid the current surge of coronavirus cases across India, data from online directory service Just Dial has revealed that in the three months between October and December 2021, there was a 16-fold surge in the number of people searching the internet for information on vaccination centres in cities and towns.

In the same period, search for Covid testing centres grew by 47 per cent across India, with demand in Tier-2 cities 2.5 times higher than that of Tier-1 cities by 2.5 times.

Just Dial’s report also showed that local pharmacies made for a majority of online queries, at 85 per cent.

The company’s chief marketing officer Prasun Kumar Tuesday said the consumer insights report forms part of Just Dial’s goal to provide users with “credible information” about the health services available to them during the third wave.

“This will ensure that people don’t step out for essential health services that are just a call away. We have been successful in aggregating neighborhood pharmacies online and a host of other services such as test centres, vaccination centres, oxygen services and ambulances services,” Kumar said, in a statement released by the company.

The report also compared year-on-year (YOY) demand, and provided online search trends for individual cities, stating that the demand for all online search in health categories grew by 19 per cent in the quarter ending December 2021, while YOY growth rate for pharmacy search grew by 15 per cent.

Just Dial’s health categories cover pharmacies, vaccination centres, ambulances, Covid test centres, and oxygen cylinders.

At 56 per cent, Delhi and Mumbai contributed to the majority of online queries for pharmacies and showed ‘maximum demand’ for vaccination centres, the report added.

Similarly, while Delhi dominated online queries for ambulance services, trends for oxygen cylinder queries showed maximum demand not only from the national capital but also from Mumbai and Bengaluru.

(Edited by Monami Gogoi)

Also read: India’s looking at Corbevax, others. World also needs to move beyond mRNA vaccines


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