MANILA - Thousands of Sinovac's COVID-19 vaccines have arrived in regional hospitals in the Philippines on Friday, four days since the country began inoculating its health workers against the disease.
Some 17,400 doses of the Chinese-made vaccine arrived in Iloilo City. Of these jabs, at least 6,000 doses would be sent to hospitals in Bacolod City, while the rest would be distributed for medical frontliners in Western Visayas.
Another 7,200 doses were sent to Tacloban City, and would be distributed to health workers in Eastern Visayas.
In Mindanao, 10,000 jabs arrived in Zamboanga City
Some 1,600 would be allocated for the Zamboanga City Medical Center, while the rest would be distributed to other hospitals in the region.
The Department of Health will provide the second dose of Sinovac to the different government-run hospitals after 4 weeks, said Dr. Afdal Kunting, head of the Zamboanga City Medical Center.
Sinovac jabs were also sent to Calapan City in Oriental Mindoro.
The deliveries were made 4 days after the Philippines began its inoculation program for health workers.
The vaccination program for the elderly, indigent families and other priority groups is expected to begin as soon as local governments receive jabs ordered from other pharmaceutical giants like Pfizer and AstraZeneca.
The Philippines, which has among the highest infection rates in Asia, aims to inoculate 70 million people to achieve herd immunity in hopes of stopping the pandemic.
- with reports from Andrew Bernardo, Queenie Casimiro, Enzo Escaniel, ABS-CBN News