MANILA — Malacañang on Monday rejected Vice President Leni Robredo's call for a list who should be prioritized in the government's coronavirus drive as "a bit too late."
The government has a list of the poorest Filipinos, soldiers, policemen and medical frontliners who will receive the vaccine first, said Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque.
"Thank you very much again, but again po, a bit too late kasi si President Duterte po 10 steps ahead," he said in a press briefing.
Video courtesy of PTV
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Robredo over the weekend suggested that specific names be collated during the waiting period for the potential coronavirus vaccines.
The Philippines plans to procure an initial 50 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine. With 2 doses required per person, this means that only a quarter of the 108 million population will get inoculated next year.
Duterte will allow the emergency use of coronavirus vaccines and has approved an advance payment to private developers.
The Department of Health said frontline health workers, numbering over 1.7 million, will be prioritized during the vaccine distribution.
They are followed by indigent senior citizens (over 3.7 million), remaining senior citizens (over 5.6 million), remaining indigent population (nearly 13 million), and uniformed personnel (over half a million).
New coronavirus cases in the Philippines have remained below 2,000 since Nov. 10, while deaths, which totaled 8,025 as of Nov. 20 only equal 1.93 percent of the country's 415,067 cases.
- With a report from Reuters