OVP, Manila launch drive-thru vaccine service for riders
Robredo and Mayor Isko Moreno were present during the launch of the drive-thru vaccine service at the Cultural Center of the Philippines complex.
AFP/Dibyangshu Sarka

OVP, Manila launch drive-thru vaccine service for riders

Helen Flores (The Philippine Star) - June 23, 2021 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Vice President Leni Robredo yesterday launched the COVID-19 “vaccine express” for riders in the city of Manila as part of efforts to ramp up immunization of essential workers.

Robredo and Mayor Isko Moreno were present during the launch of the drive-thru vaccine service at the Cultural Center of the Philippines complex.

“We want to bring the vaccine closer to them. We want the vaccination to be more accessible to economic frontliners because often they don’t have time as they are busy working,” Robredo said.

Tricycle, pedicab and delivery riders who were vaccinated also received free P500 gas cards from Seaoil Foundation and Shell Philippines.

As of 3 p.m. yesterday, more than 1,500 people were vaccinated.

The OVP vaccine express will run until today.

Robredo said the initiative was done in collaboration with the local government of Manila, UBE Express, Seaoil Philippines, Shell Philippines and Smart Communications.

The city government supplied the vaccines. The OVP provided vaccinators and other health personnel. Medical students from various schools also took part in the vaccination drive.

Apart from riders, Robredo and Moreno are also eyeing the vaccination of market vendors in the city through the vaccination express.

“We are glad that we have the same purpose: to bring the vaccine to as many people as possible,” the Vice President said, referring to Moreno.

Robredo said she is also willing to help in the vaccination of essential workers in other local government units.

“We are open to other LGUs that are willing to partner with us,” she said.

‘Areas of concern’

Meanwhile, five cities outside Metro Manila are still considered areas of concern even as the average number of COVID-19 cases nationwide has decreased in the past week, the OCTA Research Group said yesterday.

Citing data from the Department of Health, OCTA said the country recorded an average of 6,027 COVID cases per day from June 15 to 21, down eight percent from the preceding week.

Some areas, however, continue to record an increase in average daily cases of COVID-19, including Davao City and Tacloban, which are among the five areas of concern identified by the group.

While Bacolod, Iloilo and Cagayan de Oro have recorded a decrease in COVID-19 infections, OCTA said the three cities are still considered as areas of concern due to the high average daily attack rate (ADAR) or the number of infections per 100,000 population.

According to OCTA, Davao City recorded an average of 246 COVID cases per day in the past week (up 28 percent from 193) while Tacloban had 54 daily cases (up 34 percent from 41).

Bacolod had 114 cases (down 29 percent from 161), Iloilo City had 88 (down 33 percent from 131) and Cagayan de Oro had 79 (down 22 percent from 102).

In terms of ADAR, Davao City posted an average of 13.55 daily infections per 100,000 individuals, Bacolod with 19.63, Iloilo City with 18.54, Cagayan de Oro with 10.83 and Tacloban City with 20.76.

An ADAR of above 10 infections per 100,000 people is considered as high risk, while those above 20 are tagged as very high risk.

Cebu City, which is still not an area of concern, logged an average of 57 new cases per day from June 15 to 21, up 35 percent from 42 in the preceding week. It still has a “moderate” ADAR of 5.61.

A sharp increase in COVID cases was also recorded in Calumpit, Bulacan from an average of nine to 27 new cases per day (up 197 percent).

NCR cases decreasing

Meanwhile, OCTA said COVID-19 cases in the National Capital Region continued to decrease in the past week, dropping to an average of 700 per day.

It was 15 percent lower than the average of 824 new COVID cases recorded from June 8 to 14.

Last week, Metro Manila had an ADAR of 5.07 infections per 100,000 population, almost at the “moderate-low” risk threshold of 5.0.

The region’s hospital bed, intensive care unit and ventilator utilization rates are also within safe levels, OCTA said. – Janvic Mateo

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