For those still unvaxxed, Duterte has a sneaky plan
MANILA, Philippines — President Duterte said he would lead efforts to inoculate people who still refuse to get vaccinated against COVID-19 by entering their homes, like a thief in the night, and jabbing them as they slept.
The President on Monday said the vaccination must be ramped up so that the government could hit its target of inoculating 50 percent of the population by the end of the year.
He said was confident that the goal would be reached in most, if not all, the major cities “before Christmas.”
“Get vaccinated,” he appealed to people still hesitant to get their shorts during his televised talk on Monday. “I know many don’t want to do it. That’s the problem — those who do not want to get the jab.”
But he had a solution for that. He said: “Look for them in your barangays. We will climb into their homes and jab them while they’re sleeping to complete the story. I will lead the journey.”
About 23 million Filipinos have been fully vaccinated, including 7.5 million or 77 percent of the target population in Metro Manila, Mr. Duterte.
Private sector help
Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion said private employers could help the government vaccinate more people by inoculating the children of their workers.
Concepcion said business establishments were just waiting for the government’s signal to start this as various corporations had already purchased doses of the Moderna vaccine.
The government is set to begin vaccinating minors aged 12 to 17 years old later this week, prioritizing those with co-morbidities.
Concepcion also pressed for more eased restrictions on businesses during the last quarter of the year, noting that Christmas spending begins in October.
“This is the time when most businessmen can get back what they lost in the previous months. They will pay the 13th-month pay, their debts to the banks, their suppliers,” he said.
Lowest ‘R’ since July 31
There was encouraging news from the independent pandemic monitor Octa Research Group which reported on Tuesday that the COVID-19 reproduction number in the National Capital Region (NCR) dropped to 0.61 from 0.74 from the previous week.
Reproduction number, or R, refers to the number of people that one positive COVID-19 case can infect. An R that is below 1 indicates that the transmission of the virus is slowing down.
“This is the lowest since July 31 to August 6, before [enhanced community quarantine] was implemented in the region,” Octa Research fellow Guido David said in a tweet.
David also said the seven-day average of new cases in NCR also decreased to 1,933. Earlier, Department of Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said the average daily cases in NCR was projected to go down to 1,100 by Nov. 15.
David also said the region’s average daily attack rate (Adar) is 13.65, which is still at the moderate risk level. Adar refers to the number of new daily cases per 100,000 population.
Less than 9K cases
The Department of Health (DOH) recorded 8,615 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday, bringing the total number of cases in the country to 2,683,372.
It was the second straight day of less than 9,000 cases recorded, but that was due to the lower laboratory output last Sunday, according to the DOH.
There are 82,228 active cases. The majority of this number, or 73.2 percent, are mild cases, 14.2 percent asymptomatic, 1.6 percent critical, 3.8 percent severe, and 7.2 percent moderate.
There were also 25,146 new recoveries, pushing the total number of survivors to 2,561,248. The death toll rose by 236 to 39,896.
The positivity rate continues to fall, and it was 15.5 percent on Tuesday, still well above the World Health Organization’s recommendation of under 5 percent for the transmission to be considered under control.
WITH REPORTS FROM PATRICIA DENISE M. CHIU
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