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General population vaccination to start next month, says Galvez

The Philippine government is set to start the vaccination of the general public by next month, with the expected arrival of over 61 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines.

In a taped briefing aired Saturday morning, National Task Force Against COVID-19 chief implementer and vaccine czar Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. told President Rodrigo Duterte that the arrival of over "61 million doses of vaccine [will be in] September and October” this year.

Likewise, Galvez said there are 12 million doses of Sinovac vaccine arriving this month and and another 10 million doses are coning in October.

Below are the expected vaccine deliveries for September and October 2021:

“Kung dumating iyong 61 million [doses] pwede na tayong magkaroon ng tinatawag na… general population [vaccination] na tayo this coming October,” he said.

(Once the 61 million vaccine doses arrive, we can start inoculating the general population this coming October.)

Galvez said that the Philippines is expecting a much bigger volume this month with the steady supply from Sinovac, Pfizer, and US-COVAX donation.

He added that production issues of AstraZeneca, Moderna, and Sputnik have been resolved.

Further,  the “[Philippines] can expect bigger volumes from COVAX with an initial 5.5 million Pfizer, and two million Sinovac. Pfizer and Moderna will also begin to scale up their deliveries with expected 5-million doses,” Galvez said.

“AstraZeneca deliveries from the private sector will maintain at 1 million plus each month,” he said, adding that “Sputnik/Russian Direct Investment Fund will deliver the 190,000 component II and might begin deliveries of single dose Sputnik Light.” 

Galvez also announced that effective September 6, all local government units can vaccinate priority sectors A1 to A5.

Those under the A1 priority category are workers in frontline health services, A2 are all senior citizens, A3 are persons with comorbidities, A4 are frontline personnel in essential sectors including uniformed personnel, and A5 are the indigent population.

“Inanunsyo na po namin para malaman ng mga probinsya na ‘yung A1 to 5 ay open na po effective September 6. ‘Yung mga nasa probinsya outside NCR, even though they don’t have the surge, ay pwede na magbakuna ng A1 to 5,” Galvez said.

(We are announcing this to inform all provinces that vaccination for A1 to 5 could begin on September 6. Those outside NCR, even though they don’t experience a surge, can vaccinate A1 to 5.)

On the other hand, he pointed out that despite the challenges and constraints, the government’s vaccination drive is still on-track as it received a total of 54,794,130 doses and administered 37,728,114 with 16,138,934 individuals fully-vaccinated. —LBG, GMA News