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Gov’t aims to vaccinate 90 percent of senior citizens by end of July

/ 03:33 PM July 09, 2021
Gov’t aims to vaccinate 90 percent of senior citizens by end of July

FILE PHOTO: Vicente Gaviola, 75, one of the senior citizens in Tagbilaran City, Bohol, receives his first dose of COVID-19 vaccine on Thursday, June 17, 2021. (LEO UDTOHAN/INQUIRER VISAYAS)

MANILA, Philippines — The government is aiming to vaccinate 90 percent of senior citizens against COVID-19 by the end of July and 90 percent of persons with comorbidity by the end of August, the head of the Department of Health’s (DOH) Vaccine Cluster said Friday.

Health Undersecretary Myrna Cabotaje told an online media briefing that the government is focusing on vaccinating the top three priority groups, such as healthcare workers in the A1, senior citizens in A2, and persons with comorbidity in A3.

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“For A2, we are targeting 90 percent by end of July, and by end of August sana ma-reach na natin ‘yung (hopefully we can vaccinate) 90 percent of our A3,” she added.

As of July 8, the country has administered a total of 12.7 million doses of the various COVID-19 vaccines with 9.4 million injected as first dose and 3.2 million as second dose.

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From this number, 2.6 million senior citizens have received their first jab while only 861,560 have been fully vaccinated. Cabotaje said 8.2 million senior citizens have been included in the vaccination master list.

This means that only 31.8 percent of the target coverage for the elderly have so far received their first dose while only 10.41 percent have received two doses or are already fully vaccinated.

Meanwhile, of the 7 million target vaccine recipients for A3, 3.1 million or 44.9 percent have been given their first dose while 1 million or 14 percent have completed their doses.

For workers in frontline health services, 98 percent of the 1.6 million-target have received their first shot while 71 percent or 1.1 million have been fully vaccinated.

According to Cabotaje, the DOH has advised local government units to seek out and encourage senior citizens in their areas to get vaccinated as the elderly find it difficult to register online for vaccination.

“May mga senior citizen ayaw magpabakuna nang sila lang. In time, for other areas pwede naman na ‘yung A4 (essential workers), A5 (indigent population) kasabay na nilang maiibakuna ‘yan,” she added.

(There are senior citizens who don’t want to get vaccinated alone. In time in other areas, those in the A4 and A5 can get vaccinated together with them.)

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She added that dedicated lanes have also been set up in some LGUs for the vaccination of senior citizens, and that in many areas, they would not even have to queue up for vaccination.

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For more news about the novel coronavirus click here.
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TAGS: A2, A3, COVID-19, Department of Health, senior citizens, vaccine
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