Vaccine czar Galvez: Gov’t eyeing mass vaccination of adults by August


Posted at Jun 01 2021 01:58 AM

Vaccine czar Galvez: Gov’t eyeing mass vaccination of adults by August 1
Health workers wait for the arrival of residents to be vaccinated against COVID-19 at a drive-thru vaccination site for bedridden and persons with disabilities in Makati on May 7, 2021. Lisa Marie David, Reuters

MANILA—The Philippines will start vaccinating all adults by August, if the supply of shots were sufficient, the government official in charge of procuring and distributing coronavirus jabs said Monday.

Vaccine czar Secretary Carlito Galvez, in a recorded public address, said the country is expecting to receive around 9 million COVID-19 vaccine doses from various manufacturers this month.

Galvez said the Philippines is expecting around 4.5 million vaccine doses from Sinovac Biotech, 2.2 million Pfizer vaccine doses and 2 million AstraZeneca vaccine doses, both through the COVAX Facility, and 1 million doses of Sputnik V.

Around 50,000 doses of Moderna's COVID-19 vaccines, procured by the private sector, are also expected to arrive.

With these expected shipments, Galvez said the government may soon be able to inoculate between 19 million to 25 million people to achieve what he described as population protection.

"Kung matapos po natin ang more or less 19 to 25 million, ito na po 'yung tinatawag na population protection. Ito po, mako-contain na po natin ang death and hospitalization," he said.

(If we finish vaccinating more or less 19 to 25 million, this is what we call population protection. With this, we can contain death and hospitalization.)

The government also aims to to start vaccinating economic frontliners (A4) and indigents (A5) by mid-June.

"More or less, mid-June, doon na po tayo magstart ng A4 at A5 kapag mayroon na po tayong enough volume," Galvez said.

(More or less by mid-June, we will start vaccinating those under A4 and A5 category once we have enough vaccine volume.)

"We are also considering na by August, doon na po tayo magkakaroon ng mass vaccination," he added.

(We are also considering that by August, we may start mass vaccination.)

As of May 30, the Philippines has vaccinated a total of 5,180,721 people. Of this number, more than 3.9 million have received their first dose of the vaccine, while more than 1.2 million have already received their second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. 

Malacañang earlier said the Philippines will be receiving 3.4 million vaccine doses next month, with the following schedule:

  • June 6: 1 million from Beijing's Sinovac Biotech
  • June 7: 1.3 million from US-based Pfizer-BioNTech 
  • June 11: 900,000 from Pfizer-BioNTech 
  • June 21: 200,000 from American firm Moderna