60K vaccine doses for Region 7’s healthcare workers
CEBU CITY, Philippines – Central Visayas would need around 60,000 doses of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccines to vaccinate all of the healthcare workers in the region.
But so far, only 24,680 vials of CoronaVac, the COVID-19 vaccine brand from China’s Sinovac, have been delivered here.
Central Visayas kicked off its initial COVID-19 inoculation program last Thursday, March 4, at the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center (VSMMC) with at least 50 hospital workers, including hospital chief Dr. Gerardo Aquino Jr., administered with the vaccine.
As the largest COVID-referral hospital in the region, healthcare workers from VSMMC are the first to receive the shots.
Next in line for the vaccination schedule are medical frontliners from hospitals ran and operated by the Department of Health (DOH), said Dr. Mary Jean Loreche, spokesperson of DOH in Central Visayas (DOH-7).
“We also have healthcare workers from Level 3 hospitals, both from private and government, who are qualified to receive Sinovac,” added Loreche in a mix of English and Tagalog.
Healthcare workers, particularly those who attend to COVID-19 patients, are the priority of the national government’s vaccine drive.
Loreche said DOH-7’s initial survey showed that around 60,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines are needed in Central Visayas to ensure that all of its medical frontliners are inoculated.
“Those 60,000 doses are good for two doses already, including our healthcare workers from Level 1 and Level 2 hospitals,” she said.
The first shipment of COVID-19 vaccines for Cebu, a total of 7,200 vials of CoronaVac, arrived last Tuesday, March 2. These doses were allocated for VSMMC.
The second batch of CoronaVac, totaling 17,480 doses, was delivered last Friday, March 5.
These were allocated for healthcare workers from other Level 3, COVID-referral private and state-run hospitals in Central Visayas.
Of which, 6,576 vials were sent to Bohol while4,954 were for Cebu province. A total of 2,735 vials were set aside for Negros Oriental; 28 for Siquijor; and 9,188 for Cebu City.
“We remain hopeful that there will be more allocated for us (in Central Visayas) in the coming days so we can cascade them to our Level 1 and Level 2 hospitals,” Loreche said.
Meanwhile, Loreche said they are still waiting for official information as to Cebu’s share of AstraZeneca vaccines that recently arrived in the country.
RELATED STORY: Cebu to also receive AstraZeneca vaccines
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