THE National Vaccination Operations Center (NVOC) said that the Philippines has already breached the 50-million mark in the number of COVID-19 vaccine doses administered across the country.
Latest NVOC data data revealed that as of October 11, a total of 50,066,590 doses have already been administered to more than 30 million Filipinos nationwide, where 23,360,489 individuals have been fully vaccinated or 30.28 percent of the country’s target population.
“This milestone comes at a time when our country’s vaccine supply is continuously arriving in bulk, and the entire government is focused on ramping up the vaccination program to ensure we inoculate as many people as possible in a faster and more efficient manner,” National Task Force against COVID-19 (NTF) Chief Implementer and vaccine czar Secretary Carlito Galvez, Jr. saud on Tuesday.
“We welcome this development. It will serve as an inspiration to all of us, as we continue to expand the vaccine rollout to the general population and start the inoculation of our youth by Friday,” he added.
According to Galvez, more than half a million vaccine doses have been administered to priority groups B and C, which cover teachers, as well as government and private sector workers.
He said these priority groups will be recategorized and integrated into the general population group.
“With the influx of our vaccine supply, it is also right to simplify our priority sectors to ensure we inoculate all the unvaccinated Filipinos,” Galvez said.
He said the challenge right now is generating greater demand among the people, and the best way to do this is to vaccinate all Filipinos who are willing to get the jab.
Galvez said the expansion of the vaccine rollout to the general population is part of the country’s recalibrated vaccination plan.
However, he explained that while the government is pushing for an expanded coverage of its vaccine rollout, priority will still be given to senior citizens and those who are highly vulnerable to the disease.
On October 15, the Philippines will begin the inoculation of 12 to 17 year olds with comorbidities in eight selected hospitals in Metro Manila.
According to Galvez, the country now has enough vaccines to inoculate roughly 1.2 million adolescents with comorbidities, of which around 144,123 are from the National Capital Region.
“The bulk of our deliveries this fourth quarter, as you have seen in our recent arrivals, are from Pfizer and Moderna. These are the same vaccines that will be used to inoculate our younger population. We already have the supply and we are ready for the rollout,” said Galvez.
The country’s Food and Drug Administration has granted Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines with Emergency Use Authorization for its use in the 12 to 17 years old age group.