Video courtesy of PTV
MANILA — Malacañang on Thursday identified 10 areas that would be part of the priority in the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines.
The distribution priority was previously limited to "NCR Plus 8," including Metro Manila, Metro Cebu, Metro Davao, Bulacan, Batangas, Cavite, Laguna, Pampanga, and Rizal.
Palace spokesman Harry Roque said new priority areas would comprise "Metro Manila Plus 8 Plus 10", which would cover the following.
- Bacolod City
- Iloilo City
- Cagayan De Oro
- Baguio City
- Zamboanga City
- Dumaguete City
- Tuguegarao City
- General Santos City
- Naga City
- Legazpi City
The factors for these areas' inclusion in the priority list include surges in coronavirus infections, their highly-urbanized status and dense environment, and contribution to the economy, Roque said in a press briefing.
Roque said he would "clarify" with other officials how many COVID-19 shots would be allotted to the new priority areas.
The government previously set aside about 38 to 42 percent of the country’s vaccine supply for the NCR Plus 8.
"Itong bagong prioritization is also subject to more supply… Talagang important na ma-attain ang containment or population protection sa lalong mabilis na panahon dito sa Metro Manila Plus," said Roque.
(This new prioritization is also subject to more supply… It is really important that we attain containment or population protection as soon as possible here in Metro Manila Plus.)
The Philippines has taken delivery of at least 16.2 million COVID-19 shots, of which some 8.9 million have been administered as of June 22.
With the second highest tally of COVID-19 cases in Southeast Asia, the Philippines aims to vaccinate at least 58 million of its 110 million people this year to achieve herd immunity against the coronavirus.