DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 7 October) — The Davao Region received additional 1,071,720 doses of Comirnaty anti-COVID-19 vaccines from the US-based Pfizer-BioNTech.
Of this total, 994,500 doses arrived on Wednesday night, the largest shipment of vaccines in one day since the rollout began here last March 5, and 77,220 more were delivered on Thursday.
In her message during the acceptance ceremony broadcast live over Department of Health (DOH)-Davao’s Facebook page, regional director Annabelle Yumang said the delivery of these vaccines marked another milestone in the fight against COVID-19, vaccination being one of the “important tools in winning this pandemic.”
“The availability of these vaccines and more and more of these vaccine doses will help us bridge the gap between demand and supply,” she added.
Michelle Lang-Alli, health director of US Agency for International Development, said the separate shipments of 994,500 doses arrived in Cebu and Davao, the areas in the country with high COVID-19 cases.
She added that the delivery of the life-saving vaccines was facilitated by the US Government with the COVAX Facility.
“The US is proud to lead the global efforts to end COVID-19 pandemic. With deliveries incoming in the next few days, the US has facilitated more than 21.4 million vaccines delivered to the Philippines via the COVAX Facility, including more than nine million that were directly donated by the American people,” she said.
She said the US government has worked closely with the stakeholders throughout the pandemic to protect public health and strengthen local responses to COVID-19.
She said the US has provided more than P1.9 billion to support the pandemic response in the country.
“This assistance supports vaccine delivery and rollout, improves available medical treatment, boosts testing capacity, trains healthcare workers, strengthens the supply chain, sustains local businesses and provides necessary equipment to hospitals, including ventilators, ICU beds, and PPEs,” she said.
Health Undersecretary Abdullah B. Dumama Jr. assured the DOH-Davao will facilitate the “distribution of these vaccines and improve the vaccine coverage promptly and swiftly.”
“I am appealing to our people, especially those who are in the priority-list who are hesitant to get vaccinated, please take the vaccines now. You will be doing our country a great favor by improving the vaccine coverage and helping achieve herd immunity and to the rest of the eligible and general population the vaccines will soon arrive in your neighborhood,” he said.
According to DOH-Davao, the region has received a total of 4,163,300 doses of anti-COVID-19 vaccines since March.
Last September 21, Mayor Sara Duterte asked Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) to stop sending Sinovac and Sinopharm vaccines to Davao City due to the “low acceptability of the people” for Chinese brands.
She said the national government should focus on procuring more US-made Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech.
As of Wednesday, DOH-Davao reported 96,537 total cases with 18,582 active, 74,930 recoveries, and 3,025 deaths.
Of the total cases, Davao City, the epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic in Mindanao, logged 50,935 cases with 6,669 active, 42,674 recoveries and 1,592 deaths. Davao de Oro tallied 6,688 cases, Davao del Norte 17,560, Davao del Sur 10,784, Davao Occidental 3,318, and Davao Oriental 7,252. (Antonio L. Colina IV/MindaNews)