Duterte thanks Japan, US for donations of COVID-19 jabs

President Rodrigo Duterte has expressed gratitude to the Japanese and United States governments for their donations of COVID-19 vaccines to the Philippines.

In his Talk to the People Tuesday, Duterte said the vaccine donations will help the country have “a better Christmas” this year.

“We thanked the Japanese government for their donations of close to two million doses of life-saving vaccines. Indeed, Japan is a friend closer than a brother ready to help in times of need,” Duterte said.

Japan pledged last Oct. 15 to give an additional 1.96 million doses of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine to the country.

Japan’s first delivery, which consisted of 1.124 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccine, arrived on July 8.

Duterte also thanked the US government for providing more than two million doses of COVID-19 jabs through COVID-19 Vaccines Global Access (COVAX) facility.

“This is the seventh shipment of vaccines from the United States totaling approximately 18 million doses of vaccines. These vaccines demonstrate the strength of the US and Philippine alliance,” he said.

“The delivery also demonstrates the wisdom of the Philippines’ decision to do its part in contributing to the COVAX facility and strengthening its engagement with the United Nations and World Health Organization (WHO) that the vaccines will benefit our country and help us being closer to the goal of having a better Christmas,” he added.

Meanwhile, the pilot vaccination of children with comorbidities aged 12 to 17 years was conducted at eight hospitals starting Friday, October 15.

A total of 1,509 minors with comorbidities aged 15 to 17 years old were vaccinated against COVID-19 in the first week of the rollout of pediatric vaccination, the Department of Health (DOH) said Monday.

The Philippines on Tuesday registered 4,496 fresh COVID-19 infections, increasing the total count of virus cases nationwide to 2,731,735, as seven laboratories failed to submit their data.–LDF, GMA News

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