Cebu City plans to tap med, nursing studes for inoculation program
CEBU CITY, Philippines – The Cebu City Government is planning to tap medical and nursing students to help them in implementing their inoculation program against the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
Cebu City Councilor Joel Garganera, head of the city’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC), said this is among the plans local officials had in mind to ensure that the COVID-19 vaccination program, once started, will be effective.
“We need all warm bodies we can have. We cannot rely solely on our present manpower, especially with our healthcare workers addressing the COVID outbreak on a daily basis,” Garganera told reporters in a press conference on Thursday, January 14.
Garganera also said that aside from human resources, they will be prioritizing logistical needs and information drives to educate residents on the importance of inoculation.
“We will have to put the infrastructure first… These are very expensive vaccines. We might have to hire a third party to ensure safe delivery. We also have to look into the capacity of our facilities,” Garganera said.
“Also, we have to invest our efforts into information dissemination. If we fail to educate our residents why the vaccine is important, everything we did, time and money, will be put to waste,” he added.
The city has allotted P500 million in its 2021 budget for the procurement of COVID-19 vaccines. Earlier reports showed that local officials prefer buying Pfizer’s BioNTech or Moderna.
As of January 14, however, they are yet to enter into a formal agreement with any international pharmaceutical firms for the purchase of the shots.
In the meantime, Mayor Edgardo Labella has formed a Vaccine Advisory Board to oversee all aspects in relation to the vaccine rollout. Labella also assured residents here that they will be given a choice to choose which vaccine brand they prefer. /rcg
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