Sun, 17 Oct 2021

MANILA - The bulk of the latest delivery of 728,910 Pfizer vaccine doses will be allotted for distribution to the National Capital Region (NCR), major cities in Luzon and the southern cities of Cebu and Davao, National Task Force Against Covid-19 chief implementer and vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. said Thursday night.

Galvez, who personally welcomed the arrival of the US-made vaccine at the NAIA in Pasay City, said about 51,480 would be unloaded in Cebu City and 92,430 to be flown to Davao City Friday.

"So, we are targeting Manila, Metro Cebu and Davao. They will have a threshold of at least 80 percent [of the eligible population vaccinated] before the end of October. Kaya binibigyan natin sila ng supplies (That's why we're giving them supplies)," Galvez said.

Aside from the three urban areas in Luzon, the Visayas and Mindanao, he said the government's vaccination program also focuses on Regions 4-A (Calabarzon) and 3 (Central Luzon) due to their proximity to the NCR.

"We will now consider NCR and Region 4-A and Region 3 as one geographic location. Kasi we can see na 'yung economic activity, hindi natin pwede paghiwalayin (Because we can see that their economic activity, we can't separate them)," Galvez said.

By the end of November, the vaccination rate in the major cities of Regions 4-A and 3 will be at par with NCR, Metro Cebu and Metro Davao, he said.

So far, around 11 million Pfizer doses have been delivered in the country and more are expected to arrive either as procurement or donations from the COVAX Facility and the US in October, Galvez said.

The Philippines will receive more of the life-saving shots from the US government as part of the 500 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines that US President Joe Biden promised to low and medium-income countries, Galvez said.

"Nakikita natin na talagang maganda na, steady na 'yung supply na binibigay satin ng (We can see that things are looking good, we have a steady supply from) COVAX and also we would like to thank the US government for providing us with the access to western vaccines," he added.

On Sept. 22, a shipment of more than one million doses of Pfizer, procured by the national government, also arrived in the country.

To date, the country has received a total of 66.9 million doses of different Covid-19 vaccines. (PNA)

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