MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines ranks third among the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in the number of doses of COVID-19 vaccines that were so far administered, the Department of Health (DOH) said.
Data presented by Health Undersecretary Myrna Cabotaje on Monday showed that the Philippines has already used a total of 1,456,793 COVID-19 vaccine doses, following Indonesia with 15.8 million and Singapore with 1.6 million doses.
The information presented by Cabotaje during an online briefing was based on April 14 Bloomberg data and other reports from Foreign Service Posts.
The health official said the Philippines was able to administer many of the doses delivered despite vaccine supply problems.
“Ang ating comparison ay number of administered doses kasi that will tell us gaano karami ang nakukuha nating doses at gaano tayo kabilis magbigay ng doses,” she said.
“One million out of 100 million is about 1% of the total population, but we are targeting 70 million,” she added.
Cabotaje, however, said that the vaccination rank on data presented was not based on the number of vaccinated individuals per population.
She explained that the data shows the speed of vaccination in the country as compared to other nations.
“Yung Bloomberg na yan ang kinuha niya – the number of jabs – and then nag-supply lang tayo ng data. But we can look later kung ano ang pwedeng denominator, ano yung total population na gusto nilang bakunahan,” she said.
The Philippine government rolled out its COVID-19 vaccination program on March 1 following the delivery of Sinovac Biotech’s CoronaVac vaccines donated by the Chinese government.
The country has so far received over 3 million COVID-19 vaccines.
More vaccine doses are expected to arrive this month including 1 million doses from Sinovac, 500,000 from Russia’s Gamaleya Institute, and 194,000 doses from Pfizer.
“500,000 on April 22 and another on April 29. May indication, you know it can always change that we may have Pfizer vaccines that are arriving end of April and also Gamaleya Sputnik V, may kaunting initial… 20,000 doses,” Cabotaje said.
“In May, we are expecting another 2.5 Million of Sinovac and we are expecting the AstraZeneca from COVAX, hopefully by May or at the least very early part of June to cover iyong second dose natin,” she added.
The national government is targeting to inoculate 70 million people this year.