Rama ‘not pleased’ with vaccine shortage

·3 min read

HOURS before Cebu City received its additional vaccine allocation on Thursday, July 1, 2021, Vice Mayor Michael Rama said he was not pleased that only 5,000 doses arrived on Wednesday, June 30, instead of the 15,000 doses allocated for the city.

Rama, convener of Cebu City’s Covid-19 vaccination program, wanted to know the guidelines of the Project Balik Buhay (PBB), a private-public vaccination initiative, and whether this program gets its allocation from vaccines intended for Cebu City.

While Rama commended the PBB initiative, he hoped the program does not affect the city’s allocation.

Mary Jean Loreche, Visayas Covid-19 Vaccination Operations Center spokesperson, said none of the allocations from Cebu City was given to the PBB.

Loreche clarified the PBB allocation comes from the doses sent for Metro Cebu.

“PBB is doing vaccination cutting across all of these LGUs (local government units). There are 14 activated vaccination centers attached to the PBB, and I want to remind everyone that whatever is the performance of the PBB it is going to be given to the LGU where they are conducting vaccinations,” Loreche said.

READ: 16 vaxxed persons get Covid in Mandaue City

Cebu City received 14,920 vaccine doses on July 1 in addition to the first 5,000 doses which were used up on Thursday after the City resumed its vaccination program which had been stopped for three days when all its sites had to close due to vaccine unavailability.

Cebu City Health Department (CHD) officer-in-charge Jeffrey Ibones said he hoped that the more than 14,000 doses delivered by the Department of Health (DOH) will last until Wednesday next week.

Ibones said the City is currently serving individuals under Priority Codes A1 to A5 (health workers and frontliners, senior citizens, persons with comorbidities, essential workers, indigent population).

Cebu City’s vaccination program has been hampered more than three times due to a shortage in vaccine supplies.

Rama said he sought the advice of vaccine czar Secretary Carlito Galvez on whether the City should just buy its own vaccines but was told by Galvez that if the City places an order now, the vaccines will be expected to arrive in November yet.

Rama said by that time, the bulk of vaccines bought by the National Government would have already arrived.

“It is not anymore wise to be making a direct purchase,” said Rama.

Rama vowed to make sure the City will get its fair share of vaccines from the National Government.

“Mangisog man ta. Kung di ta mangisog, di na nato makuha ang sakto (We have to fight because if we don’t fight for it, we will not get what is due to us),” he said.

Central Visayas

Meanwhile, Van Philip Baton, DOH 7’s medical program coordinator for infectious diseases, said of the 68,440 additional doses of Sinovac vaccine delivered in Central Visayas on June 29, a total of 14,920 doses were allocated for Cebu City; 2,000 doses for Consolacion; 2,000 doses for Minglanilla; 2,200 doses for the City of Naga; 2,200 doses for Talisay City; 3,200 doses for Lapu- Lapu City; 3,200 doses for Mandaue City; 3,720 doses for PBB; 8,000 doses for the rest of Cebu Province; 6,000 doses for Bohol; 10,000 doses for Negros Province; 5,000 doses for Dumaguete City; and 3,000 doses for Siquijor.

Another 3,000 doses are being retained at the DOH 7, Baton said.

A total of 305,380 eligible individuals for vaccination in Metro Cebu have received their first dose of the vaccine.

Of the number, 91,196 had been fully vaccinated as of Wednesday, June 30.

Regionwide, a total of 137,022 healthcare workers (priority A1), senior citizens (A2), and persons with comorbidities (A3) are fully vaccinated with 291,065 others awaiting their second dose as of Wednesday. (WBS)

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