MANILA — Dozens of local government units failed to meet their targets during last week's mass immunization drive against COVID-19 due to shortage of vaccinators, the League of Provinces of the Philippines said Monday.
LPP president and Marinduque Gov. Presbitero Velasco Jr. said 45 provinces reached below 50 percent only of their targets.
Only 31 provinces have met 50 percent of their targets, while the provinces of Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, Batanes, Siquijor and Camiguin accomplished 100 percent of their targets, he added.
"Kung atin po talagang kukunin at tutuparin ang prescribed rate ho ay kulang ho ang vaccinator. Dahil 'yun ngang mga medyo lower ang classification na mga LGUs ay talaga naman pong kukunti ang doktor at nurses," Velasco told TeleRadyo.
(If we will implement the prescribed rate, we lack vaccinators. Because in lower class LGUs, there are few doctors and nurses.)
Amid manpower shortage, Velasco said the LGUs partnered with colleges, medical associations and civic organizations.
To encourage more people to get COVID-19 vaccine, some localities also brought their constituents from far-flung villages to the vaccination sites, the LPP president said.
"Hinahakot ho... at meron pang pameryenda ho 'yan, mga insentibo para po talaga magbakuna ang karamihan na ho."
(They were fetched... and were also given snacks and incentives so that many will get vaccinated.)
During the 3-day national vaccination campaign, at least 8 million Filipinos were vaccinated against COVID-19, the Department of Health has said. It reached nearly 10 million as the campaign was extended until Friday, Dec. 3.
Health authorities will again hold another inoculation drive on Dec. 15 to 17 amid the presence of more transmissible variants and to revive the economy.
To date, the Philippines has administered over 91.4 million COVID-19 doses. Nearly 53 million people have received the first dose, while almost 38 million others are fully vaccinated.