SENIOR citizens and persons with comorbidities who are not registered to be vaccinated against coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) will no longer be accommodated at vaccination sites in Lapu-Lapu City starting Monday, June 7, 2021.
The City Government announced on Saturday, June 5, that it will be implementing the “no walk-in” policy after chaos ensued during its vaccine rollout at the Gun-ob Elementary School on Thursday, June 3.
Apparently, those who were scheduled to be vaccinated that day were turned down, while those who didn’t register for the City’s vaccination program but showed up early received the jab.
Dr. Agnes Realiza, City Health Office head, said they want to prevent crowding in the vaccination site and to ensure that physical distancing is observed.
Realiza said walk-ins who insist on getting vaccinated will be asked to register in another area at the vaccination site so they can be scheduled.
The situation at the Gun-ob Elementary School, which was jam-packed with senior citizens and persons with comorbidities, resulted in an uncontrolled mass gathering.
According to one senior citizen, who asked not to be named, people like her who were scheduled to receive their dose that day were either told to wait or return the next day.
She said she had to wait five hours for the injection, which was her second dose, while walk-in clients were prioritized.
She even claimed that one of the health officials at the site threw a chair in a fit of frustration.
In the past week, the City vaccinated 12,680 individuals, surpassing its target of inoculating 1,500 senior citizens and persons with comorbidities daily.
According to Mayor Junard Chan, the City has vaccinated a total of 16,240 individuals, while 3,212 have received their second dose.
Barangay captains have been going house-to-house, encouraging residents to register for the City’s vaccination program. Turnout had been slow at the start, with only more than 1,000 individuals showing up at vaccination sites.
Although Realiza believes the high turnout in recent days is praiseworthy, they must avoid situations that result in a mass gathering.
“Though we are glad that more people are getting educated when it comes to the Covid-19 vaccine, we need to avoid the scenario of them gathering and causing trouble,” she said in Cebuano.
Aside from the vaccination site in Gun-ob, the City’s two other vaccination sites are located at the Barangay Agus gym and the Sta. Rosa Hospital in Olango Island.
Realiza said they plan to open two more vaccination sites at the Island Central Mall in Barangay Ibo and the city auditorium in Barangay Pajo. That way, the public will have a choice where they will get their injection, she said.
As of Saturday, the City only has 1,000 vaccines available. (GCM / JKV)