COVID-19 vaccination in Davao City slows down; 66% of target population jabbed

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 30 October) — The pace of the vaccination against COVID-19 is slowing down in Davao City which has vaccinated  788,001 individuals as of October 28 or 66% of its target of 1.2 million to attain “herd immunity.”

Dr. Michelle Schlosser, spokesperson of the Davao City COVID-19 Task Force, ask force spokesperson, aid  over Davao City Disaster Radio (DCDR 87.5) on Friday that the vaccination centers here are seeing fewer individuals who want to get vaccinated, compared with the early months of the inoculation program.

The local government has 23 operational vaccination sites, according to data published in the city’s website.

A Davao City resident receives a dose of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine at the University of Southeastern Philippines Gym on Monday, 27 September 2021. MindaNews photo by MANMAN DEJETO

She said the local government is addressing this problem by holding evening vaccinations or “Bakuna Nights,” raffle door-to-door, and mobile and drive-thru vaccinations to inoculate more people, as the target of the local government to attain “herd immunity” by end of November is closing in.

She acknowledged that the number of people who want to be vaccinated “is declining” and that they are doing all possible strategies to increase the vaccination rate.

Last Monday, Mayor Sara Duterte said during her program over DCDR 87.5 that the local government might miss its target to vaccinate 1.2 million people by end of November as the vaccine cluster is finding it difficult to look for people who are willing to get vaccinated.

“The vaccine cluster is sweeping the barangays, so naay mga teams na mabilin sa vaccination cluster, and naay teams na mangita ug bakunahan didto sa atoang communities diha sa atong barangays (so there are teams left in our vaccination cluster, and there are teams who are looking for and vaccinating individuals in our communities there in our barangays). Dili siguro ma achieve 1.2 million in November because medyo nihinay gyud (We may not achieve 1.2 million in November because it’s really slowing down),” she said.

Schlosser added that the office of Vice Mayor Sebastian “Baste” Duterte is working closely with the barangay captains for the mobile vaccination to determine who among the people in their communities have yet to get vaccinated.

She also said that the city government is completing the list of senior citizens for the door-to-door vaccination.

The public vaccination sites are already accepting individuals belonging to the general public and walk-ins, according to her.

The Department of Health (DOH)-Davao conducted a ceremonial vaccination for pediatric patients aged 12 to 17 years old with comorbidities last Friday at the state-run Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC). Starting November 3, they can also get their jabs at the Davao Doctors Hospital, Metro Davao Medical and Research Center, and Seamen’s Hospital.

According to DOH-Davao, parents must bring on the day of vaccination a medical certificate detailing the child’s comorbidity, valid IDs of both the child and the parent or guardian, and any proof of filiation like birth certificate. The vaccine recipient must also be accompanied by the parent or guardian at the vaccination site.

Children under A3, it added, are those with underlying medical comorbidities and at risk of severe COVID-19. These are children identified with medical complexities, genetic conditions, neurologic conditions, metabolic or endocrine diseases, cardiovascular diseases, obesity, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), or tuberculosis.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has given an emergency use authorization for the vaccines of Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna for children aged 12 to 17 years old.

Schlosser added that the central office of DOH has given the city government its go-signal to start vaccination for children without comorbidities but the date of its rollout has yet to be disclosed.

“Once we have reviewed and finalized the plan, we will share that to the public so that the public will understand and the rollout will be easier for both children with or without comorbidities,” she added. (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews)