Only 25% of residents in BARMM fully vaccinated vs COVID-19 — DOH
MANILA, Philippines — Only 25 percent of residents in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, Health Undersecretary Myrna Cabotaje said Tuesday.
“Ang problema natin sa BARMM ay mababa pa rin ‘yung kanilang coverage ng first dose nasa 32 percent at tapos ‘yung fully vaccinated nasa 25 percent,” Cabotaje said in a virtual press conference.
(Our problem with BARMM is the low vaccination coverage. Their first dose is at 32 percent while those fully vaccinated are at 25 percent.)
Health authorities have earlier assured the Muslim community that the anti-COVID shots are certified “halal” or permissible to Islam.
Cabotaje shared that they are looking at the possibility of asking about the experiences of other Muslim countries such as Malaysia, Indonesia, and Saudi Arabia.
Meanwhile, National Task Force Against COVID-19 deputy chief implementer Vince Dizon said that access is the main cause of the low immunization coverage.
“Hindi lang naman kasi a matter of religion ‘yan. I think, hindi ‘yun lang ang rason. Ang rason sa BARMM at sa iba ring mga areas ‘yung mahirap hanapin ang mga tao,” he said in the same press conference, noting that the region is not densely populated.
(It is not only a matter of religion. I think that is not the only reason. The reason why BARMM and other areas have a low inoculation rate is because the people are hard to find.)
“Kaya’t ang mga kababayan natin sa area na ‘yan over a large land area so, mahirap talaga puntahan, mahirap hanapin. Mahirap din silang pumunta sa mga sentro para magpabakuna,” Dizon, presidential adviser against COVID-19 response, pointed out.
(So, it is difficult to go to and find our fellow citizens in that large land area. They are struggling to go to the center for vaccination.)
To date, around 63 million individuals in the country are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
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