For Deputy Speaker for the House of Representatives (HoR) and 1-Pacman party-list Representative Mikee Romero, the path towards achieving herd immunity lies in mandating vaccination centers to operate at all hours and days of the week, as well as increasing their workforce numbers.
Romero called on the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) to enact the 24/7 service policy to not only achieve herd immunity sooner but also avoid overcrowding, similar to what occurred recently at several inoculation sites in Metro Manila that advertised having the highly favored Pfizer Covid19 vaccine.
He also spoke in favor of Speaker Lord Allan Velasco’s proposal to hire nursing graduates that have not yet passed the board exam as personnel for the 24/7 jab facilities.
However, the Department of Health (DOH) responded to Romero’s suggested plan of action by stating that around-the-clock vaccine center operation is currently not a priority.
DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire stated that their focus is on establishing large vaccination centers in cooperation with private groups that provide not only the venue but also the necessary labor.
She further added that the DOH may look into the 24/7 vaccine site proposal once the country’s vaccine supply increases.
According to Vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr., more Covdi19 vaccine doses are expected to arrive next month.
In related news, the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce (Phil) Inc., gave suggestions of their own to the national government regarding the vaccination rollout.
They urged officials to send out all available doses to the National Capital Region (NCR) Plus bubble (which includes four neighboring provinces) in order to reach herd immunity, as well as issue standardized vaccination cards.
Currently, the country averages around 100,000 doses given daily, with the goal being 500,000 in order to achieve herd immunity by November.
As of April 26, a total of 1,193,976 Covid19 cases have been recorded since the pandemic began in March of last year.
Photo: Philippine Star