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THE Chief Executive revealed on Tuesday that the national government is eyeing a possible COVID-19 vaccination drive for the general public starting in October as a preventive measure to mitigate the amount of positive cases across the entire country.

President Rodrigo Duterte said that his administration is assessing the potential conduct of inoculation against COVID-19 for individuals who do not belong in any of the priority lists, provided that there is an enough supply of vaccines.

I’d like the people to know that we are studying the possibility of vaccinating the general adult population as early as October if there is a stable vaccine supply,” Duterte said.

“Kung mayroon nang madagdag at kung kaya nang ma-absorb ng gobyerno ang lahat ng tao na mapabakunahan, we will start with the, basta [kahit] sino na, general public, parang pumunta ka na lang doon at magpaturok ka kung hindi ka pa nagpaturok ng vaccine,” he added.

The President also urged local government units (LGUs) to keep equity in mind and place unfortunate individuals upfront the priority list, recognizing the plight of poor people to further afford medications and hospital admission should they get infected with the coronavirus.

In the far-flung areas also of the country, outside of Metro Manila, there are a lot of Filipinos waiting to be vaccinated and doon sa kanila (in their place), in their respective jurisdictions, I would suggest that unahin muna ninyo ‘yong mga mahihirap (prioritize the poor), those who cannot really afford to be travelling back and forth. As a matter of fact, it would be nice of government to go to their places. Total alam naman natin ‘yang [mga] blighted areas. (Since we are all aware of the blighted areas) Many of those ayaw o hindi o (Many of those who would like to refuse or not or) needs to be convinced that there is a vaccine available, it is good for them,” Duterte said in mixed Filipino and English.

So far, the government has recorded 39.1 million administered vaccine shots of any brand. Of which, 17,078,676 Filipinos have been fully-vaccinated against COVID-19 while over 22 million individuals have received at least one jab.

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