MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines has received another batch of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine doses, the National Task Force (NTF) against COVID-19 said Monday.
In a statement, the NTF said the shipment containing 2,098,980 Pfizer doses arrived on Sunday, Oct. 31.
The vaccine shots were donated by the United States government through the global initiative COVAX Facility, it added.
The NTF said United States facilitated the delivery of almost 28 million COVID-19 vaccine doses to the Philippines, which is aside from the more than 20 million doses directly donated by the US to the country.
“I can only encourage people in the Philippines to get vaccinated, it’s a safe, very effective vaccine and that’s the way our economy and our schools get back to normal,” U.S. Embassy in the Philippines Chargé d’Affaires Heather Variava was quoted as saying in the statement.
For his part, NTF Chief Implementer and vaccine czar Secretary Carlito Galvez, Jr. thanked the US government, COVAX and the American people for the latest donation of COVID-19 vaccines.
The vaccine czar expressed optimism that the country will be able to increase its daily jab rate to 1 to 1.5 million doses, noting that the nationwide vaccination for children aged 12 to 17 will start on November 3.
“We are very confident that we can have 1 million or 1.5 million jabs a day. Before, we thought having 300 to 500 [thousand] jabs a day is impossible but right now, we’re able to achieve more or less 700,000 jabs a day.” Galvez said.
The newest vaccine shipment has brought the total vaccine deliveries for October to 34,887,870 doses, which surpassed projections that around 29.5 million doses would arrive this month.
To date, the Philippines has received a total of 106,212,460 COVID-19 vaccine doses from various manufacturers since February.