CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY (MindaNews / 01 May) — A shipment of 60,000 doses of vaccines from China’s Sinovac Biotech arrived at the Laguindingan Airport in Misamis Oriental Saturday morning, the biggest shipment received in the region since the nationwide vaccine rollout in early March.
Emiliano Galban Jr., spokesperson of the Department of Health in Region 10 (Northern Mindanao), said the shipment is intended for medical frontliners who have not been vaccinated, and senior citizens.
Galban said the vaccines would be distributed to health departments and hospitals in the region’s five provinces and nine cities; and the Amai Pakpak General Hospital in Marawi City.
Northern Mindanao comprises the provinces of Bukidnon, Camiguin, Lanao del Norte, Misamis Occidental and Misamis Oriental and the cities of Cagayan de Oro, El Salvador, Gingoog, Iligan, Malaybalay, Oroquieta, Ozamiz and Tangub and Valencia.
Marawi City in Lanao del Sur is part of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.
“Once the provinces complete their vaccination of medical frontliners, they can start inoculating their senior citizens,” he said.
Cagayan de Oro, which had earlier completed vaccinating health workers, started giving the jab to some 1,500 senior citizens on Thursday and Friday.
Just like previous shipments, a police motorcycle rider led the convoy securing the truck carrying the vaccine from the Laguindingan Airport to the Department of Health (DOH) Region 10 office in Barangay Carmen, this city.
At the DOH office, workers took turns unloading the boxes of vaccine and carrying them to the cold storage facility.
Galban said they have upgraded their cold storage facility that it could now refrigerate even the Pfizer vaccine that requires between 2°C and 8°C (36°F and 46°F) for up to 120 hours or five days. (Froilan Gallardo / MindaNews)