Palace expects criticism if gov’t execs get first COVID-19 vaccine

Robie de Guzman   •   December 7, 2020   •   357

MANILA, Philippines – Groups critical of the Duterte administration will likely blast the government should top officials get to be the first recipients of the COVID-19 vaccine, Malacañang said Monday.

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said government officials who are willing to get the vaccine first to serve as an example to the public are welcome, but stressed that it is up to the officials themselves.

“Tandaan ninyo, pag nangyari yan, ang oposisyon sasabihin, mayroong VIP treatment,” Roque said as he recalled allegations of preferential treatment for officials who were tested for COVID-19 despite the limited availability of test kits in the country.

Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go earlier challenged Health Secretary Francisco Duque III and government vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. to be the first ones to get inoculated to show the public that the COVID-19 vaccines are safe.

Duque earlier said he is willing to do it and even urged fellow Cabinet members to do the same.

Roque also said that even President Rodrigo Duterte is prepared to get injected once a COVID-19 vaccine have been approved for emergency use by local regulators.

The Philippine government is looking to roll out its COVID-19 immunization program in 2021 or 2022, and to administer it to at least 70 million Filipinos within three to five years.

Malacañang said that frontline health workers will be the first priority in the vaccine distribution followed by senior citizens, poor Filipinos and uniformed personnel.

Areas with high cases of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) such as Metro Manila, Davao, and Cebu will be prioritized in the distribution of the vaccines once it becomes available. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Rosalie Coz)

Limitasyon sa galaw ng ‘di bakunado vs COVID-19, isinusulong ipatupad sa buong bansa

Robie de Guzman   •   January 5, 2022

MANILA, Philippines – Inirerekomenda ni testing czar at presidential adviser for COVID-19 response Vince Dizon na ipatupad sa buong bansa ang pagbabawal sa mga hindi pa bakunado laban sa COVID-19 na pumunta sa mga pampublikong lugar.

Sa gitna ito ng bumibilis na namang pagtaas ng kaso sa bansa at local transmission ng Omicron variant.

“Mr. President, nag-usap na po kami ni Secretary Año, ni Secretary Duque, Secretary Galvez, Secretary Lorenzana na we are recommending that this policy in NCR also be adopted by the entire country even in areas po na hindi pa nagsu-surge dahil alam naman po natin it is really just a matter of time na itong Omicron ay kumalat na sa buong bansa,” ang wika ni Dizon sa pagpupulong ng mga opisyal ng Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) kay Pangulong Rodrigo Duterte noong Martes.

Ang rekomedasyon ay batay aniya sa mga ginagawang paghihigpit sa mga bansang nakararanas na ng case surge ng Omicron variant.

“Kung titingnan po natin ang ibang bansa, countries all over the world are restricting the exposure of the unvaccinated. Sa France po, they are cracking down on unvaccinated; Germany, they are locking down unvaccinated people; and even in South Korea po they are now imposing new vaccine passes  para po ano  i-restrict ‘yung movement ng mga unvaccinated,” paliwanag ni Dizon.

Nakatakdang pag-usapan ng IATF ang panukalang ito sa kanilang pagpupulong sa Huwebes.

Ang paglilimita sa galaw ng mga hindi pa bakunado kontra COVID-19 ay una nang iminungkahi ng Metro Manila Council sa pamamagitan ng isang resolusyon.

Ang naturang resolusyon ay in-adopt na rin ng Regional Task Force against COVID-19 ng CALABARZON na naghihikayat sa lahat ng local task forces sa rehiyon na magpatupad na rin ng limitasyon sa paggalaw ng mga di pa bakunado sa nasasakupang probinsya.

Sa kasalukuyan, 65.63 percent na ng target population ang fully vaccinated at 79.42 percent ang nakatanggap ng at least isang dose ng bakuna. (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Rosalie Coz)

 

Moderna booster shot, more effective vs COVID-19 Omicron-variant

Maris Federez   •   December 21, 2021

Biotechnology company Moderna has announced that based on its preliminary data, a half-dose booster shot of its COVID-19 vaccine increases antibody levels against the Omicron variant compared to a fully vaccinated person who has not received a booster shot.

A larger dose of Moderna booster, the company said, provides a higher level of antibody.

At present, a 50-microgram dose of Moderna vaccine is being administered as a booster.

Moderna has assured that the company will fast-track the clinical testing of Omicron-specific boosters to fight the more transmissible variant.

Aside from Moderna, other vaccine makers continue to develop variant-specific booster shots. —/mbmf (from the report of UNTV Correspondent Kath Dumaraos)

Over 1 million Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine shots arrive in PH

Robie de Guzman   •   December 9, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Another batch of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine procured by the government arrived in the Philippines on Wednesday night.

The shipment, containing  1,082,250 vaccine doses, arrived at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 3 at past 8 p.m.

The said vaccine supply is expected to be used in the second round of nationwide vaccination drive set from December 15 to 17.

The government aims to vaccinate up to seven million people during this period.

With the arrival of the latest shipment of vaccines, the Philippines has now received around 150 million doses of various vaccine brands since February.

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