Editorial: Tough race

·2 min read

As of last count, the national total of Covid-19 jabs administered in the country has been over 3.7 million, no small help from 3,485 vaccination sites. We understand, more institutions have allowed their facilities to be jab sites as well.

Today, May 20, an expected 500,000 doses of Sinovac vaccines are arriving in the capital. For days now, the rollout keeps relatively record numbers of inoculations per day. We had the highest on May 15, at 120,529, a far cry from the 30,000 earlier in the program. Delivered in May were 30,000 doses of Sputnik V; 1,500,000 Sinovac; 2,030,400 AstraZeneca from Covax; and 193,050 of Pfizer doses. Concentrations of the rollout include hard-hit National Capital Region Plus, Metro Cebu and Metro Davao.

In Central Visayas, the Department of Health (DOH) 7 on May 18 received 52,800 doses of CoronaVac from Sinovac Biotech. These will be deployed according to the masterlists of local government units. This batch brings the total doses in Central Visayas to almost half a million, half of which are from Sinovac, around 162,000 from AstraZeneca and 29,500 Pfizer-BioNtech.

The Octa Research Group estimates that Metro Manila would be able to achieve herd immunity against Covid-19 in less than two months if it can sustain 300,000 vaccine doses per day. If the capital region is to achieve herd immunity by end of the year, it must sustain a rate of 200,000 per day.

We hope some computation for Central Visayas will also be available soon, for the region to have at least a concrete, tangible goal. As of now, the jab rates fluctuate as the supply waves are unpredictable.

DOH 7 spokesperson Dr. Mary Jean Loreche said that as of May 17, around 68.1 percent yet of health care frontliners of the eligible 133,454 have received the doses. Some 43,902 of them have completed their vaccine set.

A total of 24,176 senior citizens have been inoculated in the region under their respective local government units, Loreche reported, while around 2,006 received their doses through the Project Balik Buhay.

Our rollout speed comes like tiny strides behind a juggernaut pandemic that continues to infect at least 4,000 individuals every day. As of May 18, the country’s accumulative total is at 1,154,388 with active cases of 52,291.

With a dose of optimism, the supplies we hope will sustainably increase as the weeks and months move. On the side is a lurking demon of reputedly strong variants, the “Eek” from India for instance, in our midst, as our genome laboratories reported. Tough race, indeed, while we are at the same time eagerly reopening the economy.

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