PH may reach herd immunity vs COVID-19 by February 2022 — Duque
MANILA, Philippines — The country is expected to reach herd immunity against COVID-19 in February 2022 as the government races to keep up with the spread of coronavirus due to the Delta variant, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said Thursday.
“Supply permitting and assuming there will be 500,000 or 600,000 doses jabbed per day, the conservative estimate is we might be able to achieve herd immunity sometime second month of the first quarter. Mga first quarter po ‘yan, mag-spill over po sa first quarter 2022,” Duque said during a budget hearing at the House committee on appropriations.
He said the Department of Finance has reported to the Office of the President that some 195 million vaccine doses are expected to arrive in the country until the end of 2021.
“Having said that, it will exceed our herd immunity target of 77 million Filipinos, [which are] about 70 percent of the population, so we are confident that excess dose swill be sufficient to cover those not belonging to the herd immunity population as identified,” he noted.
Herd immunity is a concept in vaccination wherein the virus can no longer spread rapidly because a large number of population is already immune to it.
The country has so far administered 33 million COVID-19 vaccine doses since March, based on government data as of August 29. Over 13.7 million individuals are now fully vaccinated against coronavirus.
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