MANILA - Israeli health experts have met with members of the Philippine Inter-Agency Task Force to share their COVID-19 best practices.
In a meeting with Philippine officials, the Israeli health experts shared their COVID-19 prevention, mitigation and vaccination efforts they have carried out in their country, with emphasis on their vaccine deployment.
The Israeli government last April lifted the indoor mask wearing policy, an indication that the country has already managed its COVID-19 cases.
The Israeli delegation was composed of Avi Ben Zaken, Deputy director general of the Ichilov Medical Center; Dafna Segol, consultant of Healthcare Policy and Innovation; and Adam Segal, logistics and operations manager of Salomon Levid & Elstein Ltd.
In a statement, Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. said that Israel's experience proves that the pandemic can be won through collective effort.
"It is our hope that through our discussions in the coming days, we would be able to learn from the Israeli experience and apply these lessons in our battle against the pandemic, particularly on how we can further improve our vaccine deployment strategies," Galvez added.
The Philippines has administered more than 8.4 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines since the government began its immunization drive last March, officials said Monday.
Of the 8,407,342 doses administered as of June 20, the Department of Health and National Task Force Against COVID-19 said 6,253,400 were given as first doses while 2,153,942 were second doses. Recipients of the latter are considered fully vaccinated.
The latest total inoculation figure was higher by more than 356,000 from Friday's 8,050,711 reported on Sunday.
The country aims to fully vaccinate at least 58 million individuals this year to achieve herd immunity against the coronavirus.
Currently, the vaccine candidates of the following companies, which use a 2-dose regimen, are being used in the Philippines: Sinovac, AstraZeneca, Pfizer, and Gamaleya Institute. Meanwhile, the first batch of Moderna's product, which has to be administered in two doses as well, is expected to be delivered on Sunday.
As of June 21, a total of 1,364,239 confirmed COVID-19 cases have been recorded in the Philippines, of which 55,847 are active and 23,749 resulted in deaths.