The Negros Occidental provincial government has put in place measures to expedite the coronavirus disease 2019 vaccination rollout in all 31 local government units in the province.
Yesterday, the Provincial Health Office implemented Day 2 of the three-day simultaneous vaccination program in 12 cities and 19 municipalities, based on the new guidelines issued by Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson to the mayors.
Executive assistant to the governor, Charina Magallanes-Tan, said that Lacson, together with Provincial Administrator Rayfrando Diaz II, monitored the second-day activities from the Provincial Capitol in Bacolod City.
“The governor conducted an online coordination meeting with the local chief executives and health service frontliners,” she said.
Areas covered during days 1 and 2 were the cities of Escalante, Cadiz, Victorias, Talisay, Bago, La Carlota, Himamaylan, Kabankalan, and Sipalay, and the municipalities of Salvador Benedicto, Toboso, Manapla, E.B. Magalona, Murcia, San Enrique, Pontevedra, Binalbagan, Candoni, Ilog, Cauayan, and Hinobaan.
On the first day, almost 3,000 vaccines were transported to the LGUs that have signified to conduct vaccination during the simultaneous rollout.
Each city and municipality is given an allocation based on the population of the A1 or frontline health care workers, A2 – senior citizens, and A3 or adults with comorbidities priority sectors.
Under the new guidelines, Lacson directed the PHO to deliver the exact number of vaccines required by each LGU as stated in the list of vaccinees submitted by the city or municipality only on the day of the scheduled vaccination.
“Turn over vaccines only to LGUs that are ready with their vaccination venue, vaccinators, vaccination team, and vaccinees,” he added.
Once the vaccination activities are done, PHO personnel are also tasked to gather all disinfected waste materials and deliver these to the Department of Health designated center.
Previously, the PHO just delivered the vaccine supply to the LGUs, and let the city and municipal health offices schedule the vaccination rollout on their own, but this caused a delay that would have left Negros Occidental behind schedule.
Diaz acknowledged that the provincial government had been “a bit relaxed” in the Covid-19 vaccination rollout, and said that they already have to step up since the national government is now regularly sending vaccines to the province.
On June 15, he said that Negros Occidental had 13,000 doses of Sinovac’s CoronaVac at its disposal, and on June 17, the province received 1,950 vials of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine equivalent to 11,700 doses.
As of June 18, Negros Occidental logged 17,016 confirmed Covid-19 cases, including 2,545 active infections, 14,163 recoveries, and 308 deaths, based on figures from the Department of Health-Western Visayas.*PNA