1 million doses of Sinovac vaccine arrive in Manila

Maris Federez   •   July 14, 2021   •   446

MANILA, Philippines — Another one million doses of Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine have arrived in Manila Wednesday morning.

Cebu Pacific flight 5J 671 carrying one million doses of government-procured Sinovac landed at the Bay 116 ramp of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 3 in Pasay City.

National Task Force (NTF) against COVID-19 chief implementer and vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. witnessed the arrival of the jabs.

He said this latest vaccine delivery will be immediately deployed to the Metro Manila local government units (LGU), with the majority of the jabs to be used as second doses.

Another 1.5 million CoronaVac doses will be delivered on July 17, Galvez said.

The vaccine czar added that around 1.17 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccine that are procured by the LGUs and the private sector are scheduled to arrive on July 16.

The latest shipment brings the country’s total number of vaccine doses at 21,779,910, according to the NTF chief implementer. —/mbmf

COVID-19 vaccine supply, no longer a problem — NTF

Maris Federez   •   October 25, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The National Task Force (NTF) Against COVID-19 has assured that the country’s supply of vaccines against coronavirus disease is no longer a problem.

The NTF reported that the Philippines has received around 97.6 million doses of anti-COVID-19 vaccines since February this year.

Of this number, 76.7 million were deployed in the local government units to be administered in their communities.

Vaccine czar and NTF chief implementer Sec. Carlito Galvez said that this month, an average of around 1 million vaccine doses arrive in the country every day.

These doses were immediately deployed to the LGUs to ensure that no time is wasted in vaccinating the people.

“The country has been receiving an average of 1 million COVID-19 vaccines daily since the start of October. And once we receive them, they are immediately deployed to LGUs and other implementing units throughout the country. There is no time wasted,” Galvez said.

The official also reiterated that the national inventory has sufficient COVID-19 vaccine supplies and that the LGUs do not have to make their own procurement for their constituencies.

He said that with the guaranteed supply of the vaccines, the problem now lies in how these will be distributed to benefit a larger number of Filipinos.

NTF vs COVID-19 Deputy chief implementer and testing czar Sec. Vince Dizon said that the government targets to vaccinate at least one dose of the vaccine to 70 percent of the target population and reach full vaccination of the said target by December 30.

He noted that this can be achieved with more aggressive action by the LGUs in the vaccination rollout, especially in highly urbanized cities.

“As I have been telling our LGUs over the past several weeks, vaccine supply is no longer a problem for our country. Our main concern at this point is how to get these COVID-19 jabs into the arms of as many Filipinos as quickly as possible,” Dizon said. —/mbmf (from the report of UNTV Correspondent Rosalie Coz)

Australia donates more oxygen concentrators to PH for COVID-19 patients

Robie de Guzman   •   October 22, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines has received another batch of oxygen concentrators from the Australian government as part of its continuing support to the country’s fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, the National Task Force (NTF) against COVID-19 said.

In a statement, the NTF said the 100 oxygen concentrators arrived in Manila on Thursday.

The first batch of oxygen concentrators were delivered last August 28.

“Australia is increasing its commitment to the Philippines in terms of COVID-19 support, and we’re increasing our commitment by further [to] P433 million to make a grand total of P1.8 billion that Australia is donating to the Philippines,” Australian Ambassador Steven Robinson said during a press conference following the turn-over.

The NTF said the first batch of the medical equipment was distributed to 27 hospitals across the country.

According to Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, the donation is vital to the country’s clinical management of the country’s severe and critical COVID cases.

“This will go a long way in improving the quality of care that we provide our patients in the several hospitals that have been benefited by these pieces of equipment,” Duque added.

NTF chief implementer and vaccine czar Carlito G. Galvez, Jr. thanked Australia for its compassion and generosity to the Filipino people.

“This life-saving oxygen concentrator will go a long way and a lot of people will be saved, thousands of them because of these concentrators,” Galvez said.

Aside from its donation of medical equipment and contribution to the COVAX facility, Australia, in partnership with UNICEF, will also provide over 1 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to the Philippines.

The said vaccine donations are expected to arrive in the country by the fourth quarter of this year.

PH to raise daily vaccination target to 1.5 million doses

Robie de Guzman   •   October 20, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine government is eyeing to raise its daily vaccination target to 1.5 million jabs amid the arrival of more COVID-19 vaccine doses.

In his report to President Rodrigo Duterte in a taped public briefing aired late Tuesday, vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. said the continuous delivery of vaccine supplies in the country will allow the government to shift its focus to inoculating as much of the willing general population.

Galvez, who is also the National Task Force Against COVID-19 chief implementer, said that for the first half of October alone, 20 million vaccine doses have already been delivered under government and private sector procurements, as well as donations.

The World Health Organization-led COVAX facility delivered 7.3 million doses for this month, which is one of its biggest vaccine donations to the Philippines to date, he added.

Galvez also reported that apart from the COVAX facility, the United States also donated 6.4 million Pfizer jabs while Germany gave 884, 800 AstraZeneca doses.

Both the US and Germany have committed to donate more in the coming months, he added.

At this rate, the vaccine czar said that achieving 100 million COVID-19 vaccine doses delivery before end-October is “on track” and that vaccine supply shortage “is no longer an issue” with more than 38 million doses are safely stored in cold chain storage warehouses.

With the abundance of vaccine supply, Galvez said the government can now shift its attention to recalibrating its vaccine deployment strategy to inoculate the general population, including children, before the year ends.

The national government is aiming to vaccinate at least 50 million individuals this year.

As of Monday, a total of 24,498,753 have been fully vaccinated or 31.76 percent of the total vaccination target.

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