Vaccination only way to overcome pandemic: Galvez

Vaccination only way to overcome pandemic: Galvez

MANILA – The national government will not get tired of encouraging all Filipinos to avail of anti-coronavirus jabs to fully eliminate the dreaded infection.

Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr., National Policy Against Covid-19 Chief Implementer, also happily noted that nationwide acceptance of the Covid-19 vaccine is increasing while there is a downtrend of cases in the National Capital Region (NCR).

NCR Plus (Bulacan, Cavite, Rizal, and Laguna) will revert to general community quarantine for two weeks starting Saturday.

“At sinasabi po ng Israel, ‘yung kanilang mga expert po doon, na hindi talaga natin fully ma-eliminate ang disease kung may sizeable amount of population na hindi pa po nababakunahan (Experts in Israel said the disease will not be fully eliminated if there’s still a sizeable amount of population not yet vaccinated),” he said during the Cabinet meeting on Thursday night.

Anadolu Agency reported that with most of the Israeli population (about 57 percent) already vaccinated, the country’s Health Ministry has canceled the mandatory wearing of masks in open-air areas and has fully reopened schools.

Cases have fallen from a peak of more than 8,000 a day in mid-January to just a few hundred per day.

Galvez said the government will eventually expand its vaccination drive to include children and teenagers.

“Darating po ang araw na talagang bibili pa tayo ng additional vaccine para sa ating (Time will come when we will purchase additional vaccine for our) lower bracket from 17 years to one year old, which comprise 29 million,” he said, adding that countries like the United States and Canada have started inoculating children aged 12 and above.

The US government recently approved Pfizer vaccines for those aged 12 to 15 years old.

“However, we should not be complacent as cases are spiking in areas like Zamboanga City and Puerto Princesa,” Galvez said.

He also lauded the active participation of the private sector and local government units, ramping up their Covid-19 response efforts “to fulfill their promise of a better Christmas this year,” Galvez added. Lade Jean Kabagani / PNA –