MANILA – It is still feasible for the Philippines to meet its target timetable on vaccination program until December 2021, National Task Force (NTF) against Covid-19 chief implementer Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. said Thursday.
Galvez, also the country’s vaccine czar, assured that the government is exerting all efforts to stockpile a steady supply of the Covid-19 vaccine.
He said the government along with its partners in the private sector and local government units (LGUs) have done a series of simulations to make sure that the vaccination rollout is still on track.
“Tinitingnan po namin yung simulation ng NCR (National Capital Region) plus at nakikita po natin na ang kailangan po ng NCR para makatugon ng 120,000 a day ay kailangan po magakaroon tayo ng supply ng at least 3.3 million (We are looking at the simulation of NCR plus and we see that what NCR needs is to have at least 3.3 million doses to meet the vaccination target capacity of 120,000 daily),” he said.
Beginning June, Galvez said the Philippines will get a steady supply of around 7 to 8 million doses of Covid-19 vaccine from different pharmaceutical companies –enough to meet the target vaccination timetable.
“Nakikita natin na mag-iincrease pa ‘yan sa August. Magkakaroon tayo ng 18 to 20 million ng every month ng supply natin (We see that it will increase even more in August. We will have 18 to 20 million of our supply every month),” he added.
Through the simulation activities, Galvez said they have computed the needed number of vaccination sites, vaccinees per day, and other auxiliary requirements within the NCR plus bubble, including in Calabarzon and Central Luzon, to meet the government’s target vaccination timetable.
He said the government is taking steps to calibrate the cities and municipalities to fast-track their vaccination program.
“Sa rate na ginagawa nila ngayong vaccination, makikita na yung iba matatapos ng October, yung iba matatapos ng first quarter ng 2021 (As to the rate of their vaccination drive, we can see that some LGUs could complete vaccination in October, others will be finished within the first quarter of 2021),” he said.
Galvez said the government will begin the inoculation of eligible priority groups under the A4 and A5 category in June.
The A4 category includes non-medical frontline personnel in essential sectors both public and private, uniformed personnel, those with high levels of interaction with or exposure to the public, and workers in priority government projects.
The A5 category includes indigent population, overseas Filipino workers (OFWs), and other remaining workforce.
Galvez said the country’s negotiation with seven pharmaceutical companies is one of the government’s strategies to secure enough supply of Covid-19 vaccines.
“Sa aming computation nandun na ‘yung possible slippage ng manufacture—kung hindi magdeliver yung isang manufacturer—at least meron pa tayong anim na reserba (Possible slippage of a manufacturer is included in our computation, so if one manufacturer won’t be able to deliver, at least we still have six reserves),” he said.
Once the Philippines gets a bulk of Covid-19 vaccines, Galvez said the government targets to inoculate 1 to 3 million Filipinos every week. (PNA)