BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN
The national government has assured Western Visayas officials that Region 6 is being considered as priority area in the distribution of Covid-19 vaccines, due to the surging of active cases, especially in Iloilo City, Negros Occidental Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson said yesterday.
With the assurance given by vaccine czar Carlito Galvez during a zoom meeting yesterday with Western Visayas officials, Lacson said Negros Occidental may expect the arrival of more vaccines on a regular basis.
As to the utilization of vaccines, Lacson said they have used 90 percent of the Sinovac doses, and 43 percent of AstraZeneca vaccines received by the Capitol from the national government as the province-wide vaccination rollout is ongoing.
“We just have to roll out whatever is in our possession,” Lacson said.
During the zoom meeting, Lacson said they were also told by Health Secretary Francisco Duque that the simultaneous vaccination of those in the priority A1, A2, A3, and A4 categories will now be allowed unlike before when a protocol set by the World Health Organization was strictly followed, to avoid losing the vaccine donations.
“I think that is good,” Lacson said. “If there are senior citizens who will continue to refuse getting vaccinated, then we will go to the A4 category, that is, the essential workers,” he added. “I think that will increase our rate of inoculation,” Lacson added.*