A total of 11,708,029 individuals have been vaccinated against the coronavirus disease 2019in the Philippines, the National Task Force against Covid-19 said yesterday.
The latest NTF data showed that a total of 8,839,124 individuals have received their first dose while 2,868,905 have completed their two doses of Covid-19 vaccine, as of July 4.
In the past 18 weeks of the national vaccination program, the government has reached a record high of 1,778,989 doses being administered.
The average daily vaccination rate in the last seven days was at 254,141 doses, with 1,197 average number of active reporting vaccination sites.
The NTF reported that 1,714,313 healthcare workers have already received their first shot of the Covid-19 vaccine while 1,156,220 have been fully vaccinated.
Some 2,524,204 senior citizens under the A2 category of priority groups, 2,993,197 persons with comorbidities (A3), 1,350,979 essential sector (A4), and 256,431 indigents (A5) have received their first dose.
Some 788,630 of the A2, 897,719 of A3, 26,109 of A4, and 227 of A5 are now fully vaccinated against the disease.
The government urged other eligible populations belonging to priority groups A1 to A5 to register for the Covid-19 vaccination program.
Those who received their dose are encouraged to complete the required number of doses as scheduled.
The public is also urged to keep practicing the minimum public health standards as the transmission of infection is still possible regardless of vaccination status.
The Department of Health, meanwhile, denied the allegations of Senator Manny Pacquiao that it has been purchasing nearly expired medicines.
In a media briefing, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said there are existing protocols and laws that would prohibit the DOH from purchasing medicines that are nearing expiration just so these can be bought at much lower prices.
“I can say that we have not purchased that kind of supplies or medicines because we are following the existing laws and policies of government,” Vergeire said.
Vergeire noted that the DOH is required to accept and procure medicines with a shelf life of 18 to 24 months.
She said medicines, drugs, or supplies that have a shelf life of 12 months can only be procured in times of public health emergencies.
Pacquiao earlier claimed that corruption in government exacerbated under the watch of President Rodrigo Duterte, mentioning DOH as one of the corrupt government agencies.
WAITING FOR EVIDENCE
Vergeire said the DOH would wait for Pacquiao’s camp to submit their evidence to the agency so it could respond properly.
“We are waiting for document or queries from Senator Pacquiao so that we can appropriately address all of them and submit to his office again documents that may respond to these questions that he has,” she said.
The agency noted that it already gave its budget reports to the senator’s office.*PNA