DOH allows walk-in vaccinations during ECQ but only for seniors

Gaea Katreena Cabico - Philstar.com
DOH allows walk-in vaccinations during ECQ but only for seniors
Elderly residents wait for their turn to get the AstraZeneca vaccine against COVID-19 in Manila on March 30, 2021, after the government imposed stricter lockdown, as hospitals in the capital struggle to cope with a surge in coronavirus infections.
AFP / Jam Sta. Rosa

MANILA, Philippines — Senior citizens can go directly to vaccination centers without appointments during the implementation of enhanced community quarantine in Metro Manila, the Department of Health said Tuesday.

Health Undersecretary Myrna Cabotaje, who chairs the national vaccination operations centers, said walk-in vaccinations will not be allowed except for senior citizens, who are second in line in the government’s vaccination program.

“Since our priority is group A2 because they’re the most at risk and vulnerable, they can do walk-in vaccination,” Cabotaje said partly in Filipino during a briefing.

During the two-week lockdown, only 'Authorized Persons Outside Residence' and people with scheduled vaccinations will be allowed to go outside.

"Our police are discerning enough to know that senior citizens are headed to vaccination hubs since they can’t go anywhere and most establishments are closed," Cabotaje said in Filipino.

Inoculation rate among the elderly remains low, with only 32.57% or over 2.69 million completing their vaccination. The government is targeting to inoculate 8.48 million Filipino senior citizens.

Meanwhile, 34.97% of senior citizens have been partially vaccinated.

The health official cited the limited supply of jabs as one of the reasons why the elderly are not getting vaccinated against COVID-19. She also said that senior citizens are not tech savvy and are struggling to register for vaccination, and that they tend to think they are too old to get inoculated.

Cabotaje said the government is aiming to administer five million doses to senior citizens by the end of August.

Other targets

The government is targeting to administer three million doses per week—or 12 million jabs for the entire month—and sustain the administration of 600,000 to 700,000 doses per day, depending on supply, Cabotaje said.

“We’re hitting almost three million,” she said.

Officials are also aiming to give full protection to 15 million Filipinos by end-August. To date, over 9.36 million have completed vaccination against COVID-19, while 11.84 million have been partially inoculated.

The country is expecting to receive 22.72 million COVID-19 jabs this month.

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