The Philippines will administer at least 55 million COVID-19 vaccine doses in October as the government prepares to open the immunization campaign to the general population.
Speaking at a Cabinet briefing aired on Tuesday morning, vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. said the government could still raise the target depending on the improvements in the capacities of local government units.
“We will ramp up our deliveries to 100 million [doses] by the end of the month so that we can open up more vaccination [slots to] other sectors like the children and the adolescents,” Galvez said in a mix of English and Filipino.
“We will administer at least 55 million plus doses.”
Galvez said the target is to administer between 500,000 and 800,000 doses each day.
Hours later, Malacanang announced that President Rodrigo Duterte had approved the vaccination of the general population, including minors, against COVID-19 starting October.
In his regular press briefing, presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said this was due to the large number of vaccine doses that have recently arrived and are expected to arrive in the coming weeks.
The Philippines has received nearly 70 million vaccine doses from seven manufacturers since February 28.
The number of fully vaccinated Filipinos stood at 20.58 million as of September 28, representing 26.68% of the eligible population (77.1 million). The target population does not include minors. — RSJ, GMA News