DOH eyes decentralized, ‘more accessible’ vaccination sites
MANILA, Philippines — As more large-scale COVID-19 vaccination drives end their operations, the Department of Health (DOH) has expressed its hopes to “institutionalize” more accessible vaccination initiatives by bringing them closer to local communities.
“Kaya ‘yong mga malakihang bakunahan ay hindi na po natin masyadong ginagamit sa ngayon [ay dahil] binaba na po natin sa mga community ang ating vaccination centers,” DOH spokesperson Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said in a media forum on Tuesday. “Mas malapit po ito sa ating mga komunidad, mas malapit sa mga tao, mas accessible sa kanila, mas magpapabakuna sila.”
(As of now, we’re no longer using some of the big vaccination centers because we’ve started bringing it closer to the communities instead. If it’s closer to the communities, it’s more accessible to the people, leading to more vaccinations done.)
She also shared the department’s objective of embedding the COVID-19 vaccination program in the “routinary work of our local government or our local health units.”
Meanwhile, infectious disease expert Edsel Salvaña likewise underscored that bringing the centers closer to more targeted communities will allow for a more efficient vaccination drive in the country.
He also pointed out that when manufacturers start pursuing their certificates of product registration, more people can get vaccinated through private clinics and doctors, which will eventually help “decrease the amount of burden on the government.”
“Malaking tulong ‘yon and mas convenient rin if the people can get it from their doctors, the same way that any of these large vaccine programs in the country are already done by both the private and the public sectors,” Salvaña added.
(It’ll be a huge help. And it’ll also be more convenient if people can get it from their doctors, the same way that any of these large vaccine programs in the country are already done by both the private and the public sectors.)
As of Monday, DOH has recorded over 69.5 million Filipinos who are fully inoculated against COVID-19. More than 420,000 of the count have already received their second booster dose.
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