Galvez: Sputnik V, Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine doses to arrive in PH starting next week

Robie de Guzman   •   April 22, 2021   •   284

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines will receive, starting next week, around 690,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines made by Russia’s Gamaleya Research Institute and Pfizer, vaccine czar Carlito Galvez said Thursday.

During a Palace briefing, Galvez said an initial 15,000 doses of Gamaleya’s Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine are expected to arrive in the country on April 25. Another batch of 480,000 doses will be delivered on April 29.

On the same day, 500,000 doses of Sinovac vaccines will also arrive in the country.

Around 195,000 doses of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines from the World Health Organization (WHO)-led COVAX Facility may be delivered by end of April, Galvez said.

By May, the Philippines is expecting to receive around 4 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines – 2 million will be from Sinovac and 1 to 2 million from Gamaleya.

Galvez also expressed hope that 194,000 doses of Moderna vaccines will be delivered next month.

The vaccine czar also reported that another 2 million doses of Sputnik V may be delivered by June as well as 4.5 million Sinovac doses and 1.3 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccines.

The Philippines has so far administered over 1 million COVID-19 vaccines, mostly to healthcare workers, senior citizens, and persons with co-morbidities, since the government rolled out the vaccination program on March 1.

DTI: Halos 200-libong manggagawa, balik-trabaho sa ilalim ng GCQ

Robie de Guzman   •   May 14, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — Maaari nang makabalik sa trabaho ang nasa 200-libong empleyado matapos na ibalik sa general community quarantine “with heightened restrictions” ang National Capital Region (NCR) at mga karatig-lalawigan.

Ayon kay Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon Lopez, magiging daan ang paglipat sa GCQ ng NCR, Bulacan, Cavite, Rizal, at Laguna – tinatawag na NCR Plus – upang mapababa ang bilang ng mga nawalan ng trabaho noong kasagsagan ng enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).

“As we further open the economy, we are expecting to bring back 200,000 to 300,000 jobs to lessen the number workers displaced since the start of the ECQ,” ani Lopez.

Noong nasa ilalim ng ECQ ang NCR Plus, umabot sa 1.5 milyon ang bilang ng mga Pilipino nawalan ng trabaho dahil sa coronavirus pandemic.

Nabawasan ito at naging isang milyon noong ipinatupad ang modified ECQ.

Ayon kay Lopez, sa ngayon ay aabot pa sa 700-libong manggagawa ang hindi pa rin nakakabalik sa trabaho dahil sa limitadong operasyon ng ilang establisimyento gaya ng mga restaurant, at barbershop. – RRD (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Joan Nano)

No need for vital signs screening before COVID-19 vaccination, DOH says

Robie de Guzman   •   May 14, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The vital signs screening will no longer be included in the vaccination process against COVID-19 as part of efforts to expedite the immunization in the country, the Department of Health (DOH) said Friday.

In an online press briefing, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said they have already issued guidelines regarding the matter after DOH advisors and vaccination experts approved the recommendation from the Philippine Heart Association and the Philippine Society of Hypertension.

She said the new policy was approved after a DOH time and motion study found that walk-in vaccine recipients and the vital signs screening were causing long queues in vaccination sites.

“Meron na ngayong patakaran here in Metro Manila ang ating mga local government, only those master listed should go to the vaccination site kaya lang ngayon siyempre ang mga kababayan natin, very eager sila na magpabakuna na kahit hindi sila yung scheduled for that day, they go to the vaccination site, so that’s one,” Vergeire said.

“Pangalawa, nakita natin na there are certain processes within our system na nakakatagal talaga and one of those would be the vital signs screening, yung pag-BP (blood pressure), pagkuha ng temperature, pagkuha ng pulse rate, ng heart rate,” she added.

Under the new guidelines, Vergeire said that healthcare workers only need to closely monitor individuals with established hypertension or organ damage prior to their vaccination.

“Ang kailangan lang nating bantayan, especially for the blood pressure, would be yung blood pressure na 180/120 or more. Pero yung iba, kahit tumataas yung presyon, maaari pa rin naman natin silang bakunahan,” she said.

“Naglagay rin tayo sa guidelines natin na there should be a separate lane para sa mga taong gusto nating obserbahan because of their established history ng kaniang mga sakit para hindi po sila nakakadagdag doon sa pila,” she added.

Vergeire also said that the DOH is eyeing to expand vaccination sites to help speed up the rollout.

The health official also noted that the public confidence in COVID-19 vaccines has increased citing a survey they conducted in March.

Vergeire said the poll showed that 75 percent of respondents said that they are willing to get immunized if a vaccine was available, and 85.8 percent said they would get inoculated if they knew that the vaccines were safe and effective.

“Nakita po natin yung pagtaas talaga ng kumpiyansa ng ating mga kababayan noong nakita nilang marami na ring nababakunahan,” she said.

The Philippines has so far administered over 2.5 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, with over 500,000 who are fully vaccinated.

PH records 6,784 new COVID-19 cases

Robie de Guzman   •   May 14, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines’s total tally of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases has climbed to 1,131,467 on Friday after the Department of Health (DOH) reported 6,784 additional infections.

In its latest bulletin, the DOH said the number of active cases in the country is at 58,986.

Of these cases, 93.5 percent are mild, 2.3 percent are asymptomatic, 1.8 percent are severe and 1.3 percent are in critical condition.

The DOH noted that five laboratories have failed to submit data on time.

The DOH also reported 2,972 new recoveries, bringing the total recoveries to 1,053,523.

The death toll rose to 18,958 with 137 new fatalities.

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