Vaccinating 60M Filipinos against COVID-19 to take 3 to 5 years — Galvez
MANILA, Philippines — It will take three to five years before the Philippines can vaccinate its target of 60 million Filipinos against COVID-19, vaccine czar and pandemic response chief implementer Carlito Galvez Jr. said Wednesday.
“We will do this in a three- to five-year period kasi po ang kaya lang natin ma-vaccinate is more or less 20 to 30 million a year,” Galvez said in a televised briefing.
(We will do this in a three to five year period because we can only vaccinate more or less 20 to 30 million in a year.)
The country is targeting to inoculate 50 to 60 percent of its population or 60 million Filipinos to achieve herd immunity wherein enough people in a specific area are protected against infectious disease.
Galvez said over 35 million Filipinos are already on the priority list to receive the expected COVID-19 vaccine.
“Mayroon na po tayong listahan na more than 35 million na Filipinos ang nasa priority listings. Iyon po ay ibinigay ng ating Department of Health base rin po sa guidance ng ating mahal na Presidente,” he said.
(We now have a list of more than 35 million Filipinos who are considered a priority. The Department of Health gave this based on the President’s guidance.)
Those considered a priority to receive the vaccine are healthcare workers, indigent citizens, the military and police.
Galvez said the “realistic” rollout for the mass COVID-19 vaccination is from the end of 2021 to early 2022.
The Philippines is already in talks with several pharmaceutical firms like AstraZeneca, Sinovac Biotech, and AstraZeneca for advanced purchases of a COVID-19 vaccine.
The government is eyeing to use P73.2 billion from loans, domestic sources like LandBank and government corporations, and bilateral sources to fund the purchase.
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