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‘Frontliners, vaccinees modern-day heroes’

The joint launching of the 24/7 vaccination center and the third mobile vaccination unit at the Jollibee branch at Gatuslao-Burgos Streets in Bacolod City Monday* Bacolod PIO photo

City government executives called health frontliners and Bacolodnons, who already got their anti-Covid jabs,  as “modern-day heroes” in the face of the pandemic, at the joint launching Monday of the 24/7 vaccination center, and the third mobile vaccination unit or, the VAX-i, at the Jollibee branch at Gatuslao-Burgos Streets.

The twin event, that coincided with the National Heroes’ Day celebration, was led by the Emergency Operations Center-Task Force, represented by Dr. Chris Sorongon, EOC deputy medical, Dr. Edwin Miraflor Jr. – officer-in-charge of the City Health Office, and EOC secretariat head and executive assistant Teresa Manalili.

The EOC-TF, chaired by Mayor Evelio Leonardia, spearheads the city government’s drive against Covid-19, with City Administrator Em Ang serving as executive director and concurrent coordinator of the Covid Vaccination Council.

Also at the launch were councilors Carl Lopez and Bartolome Orola Sr., who commended the strong public-private partnership in the campaign against the pandemic as shown by the support of the Ponce Group of Companies, franchise holder of Jollibee, represented by Marigold Ponce, and the Merzci Pasalubong of businessman Jonathan Lo, a press release from the city said.

Representing Merzci, that owns the third Vax-i bus, was the company’s public relations and marketing head, Femmy Lee Magbanua.


Sorongon and Miraflor thanked the business sector for the partnership it forged with the city government as it brings about positive results in the midst of challenges the city encounters in addressing Covid infections. 

The EOC medical team and the CHO introduced innovative and aggressive strategies to the vaccination campaign in the LGU’s bid to hasten efforts to achieve herd immunity, eventually paving the way for the Vax-i, the drive-thru, the “Bigjab Weekend” at two major malls, mall-based inoculation, on-site campaign at BPO firms, among others.

Lopez encouraged everyone to support the city’s goal and get vaccinated.

“To get vaccinated is a way to lengthen your life,” he said, adding that the city government is trying its best to bring vaccines to residents.


Orola, on his part, lauded the collaboration between the city government and the corporate sector.

Magbanua also said that as part of Merzci Cares advocacy and in support of the vaccination program of the city, her company is making available five vaccination trolleys to be distributed to the malls.

Ponce said that in support to the goal of the city to achieve herd immunity, they are targeting to give jabs to 70 percent of their employees.

Currently, they have already vaccinated about 60 percent, she said, adding that they hope to achieve their target next month.

The 24/7 public vaccination drive at Jollibee, that starts at 8 p.m., kicked off yesterday.


Sorongon said the city had been fighting Covid-19 in the past one year-and-a-half.

“Not only do we have our frontliners as our modern-day heroes but also our early vaccinees, who got inoculated ahead of the others to achieve the city’s goal of herd immunity,” he said.

Miraflor cited the pioneer vaccinees because they did not only think of  their own welfare but also the safety of their families.

“I hope this private and public partnership continues and that you will continue helping us, the city and the people,” Miraflor added.*

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February 2023

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