THE Philippines is among the top recipients of large volumes of Covid-19 vaccines among developing countries from the World Health Organization (WHO)-led COVAX Facility.
Dr. Ted Herbosa, the special medical adviser of the National Task Force (NTF) Against Covid-19, said the country is efficient in its vaccine rollout, hence more supplies are coming in.
“They like to give us vaccines because we are able to give shots in the arms,” Herbosa said in an interview on Saturday at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport during the arrival of 1,546,200 doses of AstraZeneca vaccines donated by the United States government through the COVAX Facility.
As the country’s vaccine doses continue to increase, Herbosa noted that the administration rate is also rising.
He said it will allow the government to soon reach its target of administering an average of 1.5 million doses daily and eventually achieve population protection by the end of the year.
“It’s not the vaccine itself that saves a life. It’s the vaccination that saves us, though we need to reach that 1.5 million doses per day that we are targeting,” Herbosa said.
As of Oct. 30, a total of 104,113,480 COVID-19 vaccine doses have been delivered to the country since the first shipment of 600,000 doses of Sinovac jabs in February.
An additional 2,098,980 Pfizer doses, donated by the United States government also through the COVAX Facility, will arrive on Sunday night.
COVAX was created last year to make Covid-19 vaccines available worldwide, with richer countries subsidizing poorer nations and donating both money and surplus doses.
Ghana was the first country to receive vaccines in February.
According to Gavi, The Vaccine Alliance, COVAX has delivered more than 300 million doses to 142 economies as of September and approximately 1.2 billion doses will be available for lower income economies by the end of 2021.
“This is enough to protect 20 percent of the population, or 40 percent of all adults, in all 92 AMC (Advance Market Commitment) economies or low to middle-income economies, with the exception of India. The key COVAX milestone of 2 billion doses released for delivery is now expected to be reached in the first quarter of 2022,” a Gavi news release on Sept. 23 stated. Philippine News Agency