ON PRIORITY LIST. National Action Plan Against Covid-19 Deputy Chief Implementer Secretary Vicencio Dizon assures officials and residents of Ilocos Norte that they are on the priority list to avail of the vaccine once it is available in the country. The province received PPEs, face masks, and swabbing kits courtesy of the Department of Health (DOH) on Friday (Dec. 11, 2020). (PNA photo by Leilanie Adriano)
LAOAG CITY – As the province of Ilocos Norte restrategizes to contain coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) infection here, National Action Plan Against Covid-19 Deputy Chief Implementer Secretary Vicencio Dizon assured officials and residents they are on the priority list to avail of the vaccine once it is available in the country.
Dizon and other members of the National Task Force on Coordinated Operations to Defeat Epidemic (CODE) were in Laoag City on Friday to augment the on-going containment strategies being implemented amid surge of cases of Covid-19 in the province.
In a meeting held at the Laoag City Centennial Arena, Dizon said getting vaccinated is the surest way to move on from the pandemic.
“Ilocos Norte is one of our priority areas especially for our front-liners. Hopefully, the vaccine will arrive by the end of (the) first quarter next year or the second quarter,” said Dizon in an interview with local reporters.
In the 2021 provincial budget, the local finance committee assured they have set aside funds for vaccine procurement.
But, Dizon said local government units need not worry about the initial take-off of the vaccination program as the national government will shoulder the procurement of the vaccine to be made available to all LGUs in the country.
In an earlier announcement, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said the Philippines will procure vaccines from China’s Sinovac, Pfizer from US, UK’s AstraZeneca, and Sputnik V from Russia’s Gamaleya. The Philippines has so far secured at least 2.6 million doses from AstraZeneca while other pre-purchase talks are ongoing.
Regardless of where the vaccines will be coming from, Dizon assured Ilokanos that these will be safely administered to benefit at least 60 million Filipinos to achieve herd immunity.
Meanwhile, at least 2,000 PPEs, 5,000 face masks, and 4,000 swabbing kits courtesy of the Department of Health (DOH) were turned over to Ilocos Norte Governor Matthew Joseph Manotoc and Laoag City Mayor Michael M. Keon after the meeting.
The Mariano Marcos Memorial Hospital and Medical Center also received a high flow cannula machine to be used by severe and critical patients of Covid-19.
As of December 10, 2020, Ilocos Norte has recorded a total of 446 positive cases, of which 232 of them have recovered with three deaths. (PNA)