MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte believes that the government’s vaccination program is doing good despite the criticism thrown at it.
This, after vaccine czar and National Task Force Against COVID-19 Chief Implementer Carlito Galvez Jr. reported to the president the status of the country’s vaccination program on Monday night’s Talk to the Nation aired over PTV-4.
Galvez said that the Philippines now ranks 3rd among the ASEAN member countries in vaccination, from the former 8th in ranking when the country had just started its vaccination rollout.
The Philippines also ranks 41st among 173 countries and 14th out of 47 Asian countries.
“Sa ngayon po number three po tayo at the same time 41st po tayo out of 173 countries, at number 14 po tayo sa 47 Asian countries. So hindi po tayo nahuhuli, nandoon po tayo sa may bandang per — mga ano, upper 25 percent,” Galvez said.
“Well, maganda ang record natin in spite of unfounded criticism which — anyway, we expect it. But the Philippines is able to get the upper berth, I said, of the countries that are inoculated. Maganda ang record niyan and to think that people were almost in a quandary where to get the next vaccination,” President Duterte said.
“You know, for whatever it is that really work to them, we were able to make a go at least, not everybody at one time, but we have vaccinated a lot of people. I am happy that we have completed the vaccination of the medical people, yung tinatawag nilang frontliner,” he added.
The President said the country is not really left behind as far as vaccination against COVID-19 is concerned.
“So nakita mo naman na hindi pala tayo ‘yong pinakamahina, mataas nga ‘yong atin. It goes to show that we are really working very hard, especially Secretary Galvez, to get the vaccines here in the Philippines on time. Though it is not as fast as people would like to expect, the fact that, I said, we have occupied a certain position, we are number 15 sa ano? Number three?” he said.
“Well, it speaks well of the effort of your office to at least come to a more than an acceptable performance in the matter of — well, the fight against COVID as far as the Philippines is concerned,” the President added.
Galvez has also reported that 965,960 medical frontline workers who belong in A1 category have received the first dose of the vaccination. From this number, 198,534 have already received the 2nd dose.
The vaccine czar added that 132,948 belonging to the A2 category and 180,315 from the A3 category have received the first dose of the vaccine. —/mbmf