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Duterte happy with vaccine rollout
“He said he really wants to (loosen the restrictions). The first thing is that he’s very happy with the rollout, with what’s happening in the rollout. He wants to see more happening as a challenge to all of us. Perhaps he wants to see a more massive rollout,” Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said.
Presidential Photo

Duterte happy with vaccine rollout

Alexis Romero (The Philippine Star) - March 5, 2021 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — President Duterte is happy with the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines, but wants to see a more massive inoculation so he can be confident of relaxing quarantine restrictions in the country, Malacañang said yesterday.

“He said he really wants to (loosen the restrictions). The first thing is that he’s very happy with the rollout, with what’s happening in the rollout. He wants to see more happening as a challenge to all of us. Perhaps he wants to see a more massive rollout,” Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said.

Simultaneous vaccine rollouts would be held in the Cordilleras, Ilocos, Central Luzon, Calabarzon, Mimaropa, Bicol, Western Visayas and Eastern Visayas on Monday.

Since Monday, Philippine Airlines has airlifted 55,200 doses of Sinovac vaccines to Cagayan de Oro, Davao, Legazpi and Cotabato on four different flights.

Upon arrival, the vaccine were loaded into cold-storage vans and delivered to various hospitals in preparation for regional vaccination drives.

Loosening restrictions

And because of the expected arrival of vaccines from both the COVAX facility and Chinese drug-maker Sinovac, Nograles added that it’s possible to place the entire country under the most lenient modified general community quarantine or MGCQ.
Around 9,077 persons have received vaccines in 10 Metro Manila hospitals so far, with the government allotting 3.7 million vaccine doses solely for healthcare workers.

The Armed Forces of the Philippines confirmed that 2,290 military health personnel have been inoculated in five sites during the first four days of vaccination.

For the Philippine Coast Guard, commodores Fran Eden and Luz Escarilla, the first women doctors to reach the rank, expressed willingness to receive the Sinovac vaccine.

Breach in protocol

Meanwhile, Malacañang admitted yesterday that protocols were breached when Interior Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya, Metropolitan Manila Development Authority public services head Michael Salalima and Quezon Rep. Helen Tan were vaccinated despite the policy prioritizing healthcare workers.

“We are not perfect in implementing protocol, we had breaches but we learned from it and now, everyone knows it’s medical frontliners first,” presidential spokesman Harry Roque said.

National Task Force chief implementer Carlito Galvez Jr. said the breach in prioritization protocols merits a probe.

“There are no directives like that. That’s wrong, what we have is all medical frontliners, the 1.7 million (medical) frontliners would be prioritized for now. We don’t have enough vaccines… we will investigate that just in case there was indeed an occurrence like that,” Galvez said.

On the other hand, Tan denied receiving special treatment and argued she received the vaccine slot through her son, a surgeon at Veterans Memorial Medical Center.

“I would like to ask the public not to perceive this as VIP treatment, since it is totally false and misguided, inasmuch as I am a legal dependent, an immediate family member of a frontliner working as a medical professional at the VMMC,” the congresswoman, a doctor by profession, lamented. — Rudy Santos, Romina Cabrera, Robertzon Ramirez, Edu Punay, Michelle Zoleta, Tina Mendez, Neil Jayson Servallos

COVID-19 VACCINE PRESIDENT DUTERTE
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