COVID-19 Crisis: Millions more vaccines coming to the Philippines

For those who are scared about the Department of Health’s (DOH) daily count of new COVID-19 (China Virus) cases in the Philippines averaging 10,000, there is this recent news from the national government that could put some at ease – many millions more vaccines are coming into the country in the months ahead.

The press release published through Philippine News Agency (PNA) states that the national government is working hard to ensure that millions of COVID-19 vaccines from four manufacturers will arrive soon plus even more will come after April. The announcement was made by vaccine czar Sec. Carlito Galvez, Jr.

For more, read the excerpt posted below. Some parts are in bold…

The government is working hard to ensure that the country can secure almost 14 million vaccine doses from four vaccine manufacturers within the second quarter, said vaccine czar Sec. Carlito Galvez, Jr., chief implementer of the National Task Force Against Covid-19.

“The global supply is limited but the government is doing its best to ensure that the country will have a fair share of the vaccines. The instruction of President Rodrigo Duterte is for Filipinos to be vaccinated and save more lives as we collectively surmount the challenges brought about by the pandemic,” Galvez said.

In his report to President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday, Galvez said the delivery of 1.5 million doses of Sinovac’s CoronaVac is expected to be completed within April.

The government is expecting another 500,000 doses to be delivered on April 22, and another 500,000 doses on April 29.

Sinovac had shipped out 500,000 doses last April 11. These are on top of the 2 million doses that the Chinese vaccine maker had delivered to the country last February and March.

An initial 20,000 doses of the Russian-made Sputnik V are also expected to arrive this week. The second tranche of 480,000 doses will be delivered before the end of April.

Galvez said the government is also expecting the shipment of 195,000 Pfizer vaccine doses by the end of April or early May.

He said there is also a possibility that AstraZeneca vaccines coming from the COVAX Facility will also arrive within the month.

For May, Galvez said the government expects at least 2 million doses of Sinovac vaccines to be delivered to the country, along with 1 to 2 million Sputnik V doses, and 194,000 Moderna doses.

He said the government is also working with the World Health Organization, GAVI, and UNICEF for the possible delivery of Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines under the COVAX Facility.

Galvez said the government expects to receive 7 to 8 million vaccine doses in June. These include 4.5 million doses of CoronaVac, 2 million doses of Sputnik V, and 1.3 million doses of AstraZeneca.

“With the arrival of these vaccines, we will continue our aggressive vaccine roll-out in the county to protect the Filipino from Covid-19,” Galvez said.

As of April 18, a total of 1,477,757 vaccine doses have been administered in the country. Currently, only medical front-liners, senior citizens, and persons with comorbidities are being inoculated.

Starting mid-May or June, the government will allow the inoculation of other essential workers.

The Philippines ranks third among countries in Asean in the number of citizens that have been vaccinated, while the country has placed 41st out of 173 countries worldwide in the same category and 14th among 47 Asian nations.

At present, the government has signed contracts with five vaccine manufacturers, which include Sinovac, AstraZeneca, Moderna, Novovax and Gamaleya. Contracts with Johnson & Johnson and Pfizer are being finalized.

Galvez said the country expects a steady supply of about 10 million to 15 million vaccine doses per month in the third and fourth quarters of this year. 

In response, Duterte lauded the government’s vaccination rollout, saying it is “more than an acceptable performance in the matter of the fight against Covid as far as the Philippines is concerned.”

“Maganda ang record natin (We have a good record) despite unfounded criticism…The Philippines was able to get the upper berth of the countries that are inoculated. Maganda ang record na ‘yan (That’s a good record) and to think people were almost in a quandary where to get the next vaccination,” the President said.

“Nakita mo naman hindi pala tayo ang pinakamahina at mataas ‘yung atin (We are not the weakest) and it goes to show that we are really working very hard especially Sec. Galvez to get the vaccines here in the Philippines on time,” he added.

Wow. That’s a lot of COVID-19 vaccines coming into the Philippines in the months to come. Achieving herd immunity for the Filipino people is the goal here and it is crucial not only for people’s lives but also for the economy. This China virus pandemic negatively impacted everyone and it even prevented people from heavily attending and worshiping the Lord together at churches. In the private sector, cinemas are still closed which took its toll on the 300,000 cinema industry workers.

While waiting for vaccines to arrive, residents of the cities of Muntinlupa and Las Las Piñas are encouraged to get themselves registered.

For Muntinlupa City, get the details here.

For Las Piñas City, get the details here.

Nationally, a total of 1,353,107 people have been vaccinated with a total of 1,562,563 COVID-19 vaccines as of April 20, 2021. Among those who got vaccinated were 989,703 healthcare workers.

If you have something to say about the current situation of COVID-19 vaccines in the country, or within your city or local community, you may contact me directly online or comment below.

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