Start Covid-19 vaccinations before further easing rules in NCR – OCTA Research
MANILA, Philippines — The Covid-19 vaccine rollout should start first before further relaxing restrictions in Metro Manila, a member of the OCTA Research Group said Monday.
In a televised briefing, Dr. Guido David stressed that Metro Manila should not risk a surge in Covid-19 cases while the government rolls out the expected vaccines as this will only delay the vaccination plan.
“For Metro Manila, I think it’s too early to risk an MGCQ [modified general community quarantine] at this stage. Lalo na the vaccine rollout is about to happen. So unahin muna natin ang vaccine rollout,” Guido said during the Laging Handa briefing.
(For Metro Manila, I think it’s too early to risk an MGCQ at this stage especially when the vaccine rollout is about to happen. Let’s prioritize the vaccine rollout.)
“We understand ‘yung economy but the economy will recover more quickly once we’ve started vaccinating more people and that’s why it’s important for us to have this rollout program in place. It’s also important na wala tayong surge na nangyayari. We can’t risk a surge while we’re rolling out the vaccines kasi it will delay the process of vaccination,” he added.
(We understand the importance of reopening the economy but the economy will recover more quickly once we’ve started vaccinating more people and that’s why it’s important for us to have this rollout program in place. It’s also important. It’s also important that we don’t have a surge. We can’t risk a surge while we’re rolling out the vaccines as this will delay the process of vaccination.)
Metro Manila’s GCQ status was retained for the entire month of February.
Other areas also under GCQ this month are the Cordillera Administrative Region, Batangas province, Tacloban City, Davao City, Davao del Norte, Lanao del Sur, Iligan City. The rest of the country is under MGCQ.
At least 5.6 million Covid-19 vaccines from US drugmaker Pfizer and British firm AstraZeneca are expected to arrive in the Philippines by the first quarter of 2021. Vaccines of both firms already received an emergency use authorization (EUA) from local regulators.
Meanwhile, 50,000 vaccines developed by China’s Sinovac are expected to arrive in the country this month even if it has yet to secure a EUA as of this posting.
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