MALACANANG, MANILA (06 June 2022) — The National Task Force Against COVID-19 remains confident that it will achieve its goal of fully vaccinating at least 70 million Filipinos by the end of the Duterte administration’s term.

During President Rodrigo Duterte’s last Talk to the People public address on Monday, NTF chief implementer and vaccine czar Secretary Carlito G. Galvez, Jr. said such optimism is based on the latest data gathered by the National Vaccination Operations Center (NVOC).

NVOC figures show that the country’s average four-week jab rate for the first dose stood at 321,083, while 242,606 second doses were administered on average over the same four-week period.

“So ‘yung atin pong best-case scenario na bago po tayo matapos ang ating administrasyon, ang nakikita po namin ang pinaka-honest-to-goodness na aming assessment sa individuals with at least one dose, 75 million po tayo; and then ‘yung fully vaccinated po ay 70,087,920,” Galvez told the President.

As of June 6, 2022, a total 74,221,490 Filipinos have received at least one dose, while 69,519,052 individuals are already fully vaccinated.

A significant milestone

Galvez explained that based on the National Vaccination Plan, the government’s original target was to vaccinate 70 million Filipinos. But this figure was increased to 90 million due to recent transmissions of the new COVID-19 variants.

He emphasized, however, that the government’s 70-million vaccination target is already substantial, and is within the range approved by the World Health Organization (WHO).

“Ang WHO po ay ay talagang tuwang-tuwa din dahil there are only few countries who have accomplished ‘yung 70 million fully-vaccinated people. And isa po ang Pilipinas na sinasabi nilang napakaganda ng pag-arangkada sa vaccination” Galvez said.

The vaccine czar also reported that there has been no surge in infections recorded recently because of the continuous vaccination being carried out by local government units nationwide.

Galvez noted that this is a major accomplishment considering that there have been a lot of superspreader events in the past months, which include the national elections, Ramadan, Holy Week, the resumption of on site work reporting, and the further easing of restrictions.

“Sinasabi po ng mga maraming forecast na after May election magkakaroon po tayo ng surge. Natapos na po ang May at awa po ng Diyos, pinagpala po tayo, Mr. President. Sa ngayon, nakikita natin maintain lang po ‘yung ating mga kaso,” Galvez said.

The Philippines only recorded 2,479 active COVID-19 cases as of June 5, 2022.

Recognizing bayanihan and compliance to health protocols

In light of these positive developments, President Duterte lauded Galvez, other task force officials, and the Filipino people for working together to address the challenges of the health crisis.

“Secretary Galvez, I’d like to congratulate you for a job well done. And to think hindi talaga ako nagkamali. Alam mo, without going into the demarcation line of the toil that one pours into an undertaking, the one single factor that we can attribute to sa ating magandang recovery was ‘yung pagsunod ng tao,” President Duterte said.

“And to be the fastest-growing economy in ASEAN, ang ranking natin maganda sa vaccination all throughout the world. And sa awa ng Diyos, we never suffered any surge na bumalik iyong ano kasi nabakunahan na lang almost lahat,” he added.

President Duterte also said that he is pleased with the achievements of his administration, as all of these aim to uplift the lives of Filipinos.

“Whatever little improvement that we have made on the lives of our countrymen, maski gaano kaliit — iyong malaki na dumating mas maganda — pero kung nakatulong tayo even how little or mere it was, medyo kuntento ako.” he said.

“I am happy that the agencies working under me were really working for the benefit of the people. Maraming salamat po sa inyo,” he added.

The effective implementation of the government’s COVID-19 policies led to the revival of the nation’s economy as evidenced by the reopening of more businesses. This has been fueled by the easing of mobility restrictions in most parts of the country

The Philippines has also maintained its economic credit rating of BBB+ based on the Japan-based Rating and Investment Information Inc.

The country also saw an impressive 8.3% growth of its GDP during the 1st quarter of 2022 despite the Omicron outbreak in January.

The Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) on Saturday, June 4, 2022, amended the Guidelines on the Nationwide Implementation of Alert Level Systems for COVID-19 allowing business establishments under Alert Level 1 to operate at 100% full capacity.

Galvez said these positive developments will help more Filipinos bounce back from the health crisis, and enable the next administration to sustain and build on these gains.

“We were able to save more lives without compromising our economy. We are now on the road towards full recovery,” he said.

“We are confident that the incoming administration will build upon these developments, sustain the government’s vaccination efforts, and effectively lead the nation to the new normal,” he added. ###