PASAY CITY (21 August 2021) — Another one million doses of Chinese-donated vaccines were added to the growing vaccine supply of the Philippines.
The first batch of Chinese-donated Sinopharm vaccines containing 739,200 doses arrived in the country on Friday while the remaining 260,800 doses were delivered on Saturday together with one million doses of Sinovac vaccines procured by the national government.
“We are receiving these life-saving vaccines with much gratitude and high hopes as we continue to fight COVID-19 and its variants,” said President Rodrigo Roa Duterte, who witnessed the arrival of the first batch of vaccines via video teleconference.
The President also thanked the Chinese government for the various pandemic response assistance it has provided to the Philippines, which include medical supplies and equipment, technical support, and vaccines.
“These initiatives are indeed a testament of the goodwill of the Chinese government and the deep, strong relations between the Philippines and China,” Duterte said.
“These additional doses will definitely boost our efforts to ramp up the vaccination rollout and allow us to achieve herd immunity soon,” he added.
Meanwhile, Chinese Ambassador Huang Xilian expressed his country’s continued support to help the Philippines in its battle against the pandemic.
“These difficult times highlight our friendship and partnership between our two nations and two peoples,” Huang said.
“We are committed to continuing this cooperation with the Philippines and providing more vaccines to help defeat the virus and revitalize the economy,” he added.
According to National Task Force against COVID 19 Chief Implementer and vaccine czar Secretary Carlito G. Galvez, Jr., the latest vaccine donation will bring the total number of Chinese-donated vaccines to the Philippines to two million.
“China has played an invaluable role in our national vaccine program. We have not forgotten that it was through your donation of one million Sinovac vaccine doses that we were able to begin our vaccine rollout in March,” said Galvez.
“These new supplies from Sinopharm and Sinovac, will significantly scale up our vaccine rollout across the country, especially in high risk areas with increasing COVID 19 cases,” he added.
Sinopharm and Sinovac vaccines have been included in the World Health Organization’s Emergency Use Listing.
Galvez said nearly six million COVID-19 vaccine doses coming from different manufacturers were delivered to the country this week.
These vaccines include government-procured doses from Pfizer and Sinovac, Astrazeneca vaccines purchased by the private sector and local government units (LGUs), and Chinese-donated Sinopharm vaccines.
As of August 21, the country’s total cumulative vaccine supply stands at 48,522,890 doses with 14,662,190 million doses so far have been delivered this August.
Galvez said that more than five million doses are due to arrive in the last week of the month. These are government-procured Pfizer, Moderna, and Sinovac doses.
Likewise, a total of 748,000 doses of Moderna that were procured by the private sector will be part of the expected shipments.
The vaccine czar expects that by the end of the month, the country’s total cumulative vaccine supply would be more than 53 million doses.
Breaching the 30M-mark of administered jabs
As of August 20, the Philippines is now about to breach 30 million jabs, wherein 16,940,783 doses were given as first shot. Meanwhile, the country has now breached the 13 million mark fully vaccinated individuals with 13,049,907 fully vaccinated Filipinos.
According to the National Vaccination Operations Center (NVOC), the country’s daily jab rate this month has been sustained at 475,532.
Galvez expects the country to hit the 30 million mark in total jabs administered within this week.
“Napakasaya po natin dahil palaki nang palaki ang bilang ng ating mga kababayan na nakakakuha na ng complete doses ng mga bakuna. Sila po ay bahagi ng 18.42% ng ating eligible population o ‘yung nas edad 18 pataas,” said Galvez.
In the National Capital Region (NCR), the number of fully vaccinated individuals has reached 4,161,799 or 43.33% of the region’s eligible population.
Out of the country’s total cumulative vaccine supply, 39,861,410 doses have been deployed as of August 20.
The vaccine czar said that with the arrival of more vaccine supplies, the allocation for all regions will increase to ensure that local government units across the country will continue to raise their vaccination output and protect more lives.
“Sinisiguro natin na bagamat nakatutok tayo sa mga lugar na matataas ang mga kaso at may presence ng Delta variant, hindi mapag-iiwanan ang ibang mga probinsya lalung-lalo na ang mga kababayan natin na naninirahan sa mga isla at iba pang malalayong lugar” said Galvez.
“Inaayos po natin ang ating vaccine allocation para ang ibang mga rehiyon ay makahabol sa bilis ng vaccination output sa NCR,” he added.
Among those who welcomed the arrival of the Sinopharm vaccines were Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Assistant Secretary Wilben Mayor, NTF special adviser Dr. Ted Herbosa, and DOH Director Ariel Valencia. END