Makati mayor on viral video of incorrect vaccination: ‘It was human error’

Robie de Guzman   •   June 28, 2021   •   1454

MANILA, Philippines – Makati Mayor Abigail Binay on Monday confirmed that the viral video showing a nurse who was not able to properly administer a COVID-19 vaccine dose was taken at a vaccination site in the city.

She said the incident occurred on June 25 but was immediately corrected.

“We acknowledge the video. It was human error on the part of the volunteer nurse. Volunteer po siya na nurse. It was immediately corrected,” Binay said during the Palace briefing.

Binay said the woman was able to receive a vaccine dose on June 26 after she reported the incident to the city government.

The viral video showed a health worker injecting a needle into the arm of a vaccine recipient without pushing the plunger.

Binay asked for the public’s understanding as she empathized with the strenuous labor being faced by healthcare workers amid the pandemic.

“Maawa naman po kayo sa nurse na nagkusang loob na nag-volunteer ng kaniyang oras para lang po magsilbi sa ating kababayan. Tao lang po ang ating frontliners, napapagod, nagkakamali,” she said.

“Pero mahalaga po na itinama namin agad ang pagkakamaling ito at humihingi po siya at kami ng patawad at nagbibigay din po kami ng assurance na hindi na po ito mangyayaring muli,” she added.

The mayor also appealed to some people to stop criticizing the nurse and the city government’s COVID-19 vaccination program.

“Ang nakakalungkot din po dito ay siymepre mag-e-eleksyon na po next year at ang iba pong nagkakalat ng video ay tuwang-tuwa sa nangyari at ginagamit po itong paraan para po siraan ako at para siraan ang vaccination program ng Makati,” she said.

“Pero hindi ho nila nakikta na ang vaccination rollout ng Pilipinas po ang maapektuhan kung sisisraan po naitn ang kredibiliada ng vaccination po natin,” she added.

The Department of Health earlier said it was probing the incident, which it described as “a clear breach of vaccination protocol.”

The agency also assured it has taking measures to improve the vaccination protocol. –RRD (with details from Correspondent Aiko Miguel)

Private sector, nais bumili ng COVID-19 booster shots at investigational drug

Robie de Guzman   •   October 20, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Umapela sa pamahalaan ang grupo ng mga negosyante na payagan silang bumili ng COVID-19 vaccine booster shots at experimental oral anti-viral drug pill na mulnopiravir.

Ayon kay Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion, naniniwala ang mga negosyante na mas mapapabilis ang pagbangon ng ekonomiya ng bansa kung magiging maagap ang pamahalaan.

“Pero hindi pa lumalabas yung mga pills eh pero siyempre kailangang maglagay sila ng order dito. So, all of those are going to be done—boosters, itong mga bakuna na kailangan nating tuloy-tuloy ito,” ani Concepcion.

Para lalo pang mapalawak at mapabilis ang isinasagawang vaccination roll out ng pamahalaan, iminumungkahi rin ng private sector ang pagpapatupad ng “vax to the max.”

Sa ilalim ng panukala, bubuksan na ang pagbabakuna sa lahat ng mga nais na tumanggap nito at hindi na ikokonsidera ang priority list.

Sa kasalukuyang vaccination framework, ang mga nasa priority groups lang muna ang bibigyan ng bakuna laban sa COVID-19. Ito ay ang mga healthcare worker, senior citizen, persons with co-morbidities, essential workers, at indigent.

Sa ngayon ay nagsasagawa na ang pamahalaan ng pilot vaccination para sa mga batang may edad 12 hanggang 17 pero prayoridad ang mga may co-morbidity.

Ngayong Oktubre naman planong ilunsad ang COVID-19 vaccination para sa general adult population.

Ayon kay vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr., nais ngayon ng pamahalaan na itaas sa 1.5 million ang daily vaccination target sa gitna na rin ng patuloy na pagdating ng mga supply ng bakuna sa bansa.

“Kumbaga sa ano hindi na po sequential iwa-widen na po natin yung tinatawag natin yung sinasabi n’yo nga po na kung sino yung gusto magpa-vaccine ay magpabakuna na po,” ani Galvez.

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.

Gov’t urged to prohibit walk-ins in COVID-19 vaccination for minors

Robie de Guzman   •   October 13, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Senator Sherwin Gatchalian on Wednesday called on the National Task Force (NTF) against COVID-19 to avoid walk-ins and prevent crowding in vaccination sites when the pilot inoculation for minors begins on October 15.

“I would discourage the NTF from doing a first-come, first-served walk-in type of arrangement,” Gatchalian said during a Senate panel hearing on the pilot testing of limited face-to-face classes that also discussed the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines to minors.

“We don’t allow a walk-in type of arrangement dahil talagang mag-iipon-ipon ang mga tao, especially now that the weather condition is unpredictable at maya’t maya ay umuulan. Let’s not do a walk-in type of arrangement because that will really spell disaster at the end,” he added, referring to the experience of Valenzuela City, which strictly imposed vaccination schedules to avoid overcrowding in vaccination sites.

The government is poised to begin administering COVID-19 vaccines to minors aged 12 to 17 with comorbidities. They are listed in the Pediatric A3 category and will be the first to receive their COVID-19 vaccines.

Children of healthcare workers will also be given priority in pediatric vaccination against COVID-19.

“It’s about time that we vaccinate our teenagers and we support the prioritization of teenagers with comorbidities,” Gatchalian said.

What we’re driving at is that we don’t want a scenario wherein they will be lining up in those eight hospitals. Kawawa naman ang mga batang ito sa ganung sitwasyon,” he added.

Eight hospitals so far have been designated for the first phase of pediatric vaccination. These include the National Children’s Hospital, Philippine Heart Center, Pasig City Children’s Hospital, Fe Del Mundo Medical Center, Philippine General Hospital, Makati Medical Center, St. Luke’s Medical Center in Taguig, and Philippine Children’s Medical Center.

The vaccine rollout in hospitals will begin with the 15-17 age group followed by minors aged 12-14.

The government will be using Pfizer and Moderna vaccines for the vaccination of this age group, as these were granted emergency use authorization by the Food and Drug Administration.

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