The Philippine national government released a statement earlier today, September 3, that it is ready to procure COVID-19 vaccine booster shots, which will be allocated to the medical front-liners and healthcare workers or the A1 priority group, and are only waiting for the National Immunization Technical Advisory Group (NITAG) and World Health Organization (WHO) to evaluated and approve the need for booster shots in the country.
According to the National Task Force (NTF) Against COVID-19 Chief implementer and vaccine czar Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr, they are ready to sign a contract with four vaccine manufacturers when the two organizations have given them a go-signal.
He also added that the Department of Finance ensured the vaccine czar that the funds allocated by the national government, which is P45 billion, for the procurement will be released once the need for booster shots have been affirmed.
Galvez stated that they are maximizing the efforts in increasing vaccinated individuals throughout the country.
“Apart from ensuring the stability of vaccine supply, we are also focusing on the administration of the second dose and increasing the capacities of vaccination sites. We will aspire na makuha ‘yung (to reach) 20 million by the end of the month,” Galvez said.
As of September 1, the country has reached 14,105,330 vaccinated individuals, which only accounts for 18.22% of the target population.
Meanwhile, the national government has received 188,370 doses of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine on September 2, from the COVID-19 Vaccines Global Access (COVAX).
Furthermore, the government is also expecting a total of 25 million doses of vaccines from various manufacturers this month.