Philippines receives single biggest delivery of Covid-19 vaccines

COVID-19 vaccine
COVID-19 vaccine

The Philippines on Saturday received the single biggest delivery of Covid-19 vaccines from the World Health Organization’s COVAX facility, officials said.

A total of 2,030,400 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine were delivered to Manila from the Netherlands, according to the national task force on the coronavirus pandemic.

“These 2 million doses represent a lifeline for so many Filipinos who have been waiting for relief from the suffering and the fear that this virus has brought upon all of us,” UN Philippines Resident Coordinator Gustavo Gonzalez said.

“Looking at these vials, I see hope and relief for Filipinos who need it most,” he added.

The delivery brought to 7,571,000 the total number of doses of Covid-19 vaccine received by the Philippines since March. These include donations from the Chinese government and COVAX.

Aside from AstraZeneca, the country has also received 5 million doses of China’s Sinovac and 15,000 of Russia’s Gamaleya.

The Philippines has so far vaccinated at least 1.8 million people. The government is aiming to inoculate up to 70 million of the country’s total population of around 110 million by the end of the year.

The Philippines’ total caseload of Covid-19 was at 1,094,849 on Saturday, up by 6,979 cases, the Department of Health said. The death toll rose by 170 to 18,269, it added.

The government has temporarily banned the entry of travellers from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka amid the detection of other coronavirus variants in those countries.

All travellers allowed to enter into the Philippines are also required to undergo a 14-day quarantine, even if they have already been vaccinated.

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