Regional Updates (01/26/21)

Practice vaccination

THE LOCAL government of Valenzuela City holds its first simulation on January 26 of the vaccination process that is targeted for implementation by the second half of the year. The city government also opened its online registration site for the free vaccination program for residents 18 years old and above. The vaccination exercise was held at the Malinta Elementary School, one of the 17 designated sites. Mayor Rex T. Gatchialan said in a Twitter post: “Practice makes perfect.”

PCCI-Mindanao to assist Davao MSMEs procure COVID vaccines

HELPING small businesses recover from the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic is at the top of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry-Mindanao’s (PCCI-Mindanao) agenda this year, starting with the procurement of vaccines. PCCI-Mindanao Regional Governor Arturo M. Milan said they are currently conducting a survey of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in the Davao Region to find out how they can be assisted in buying vaccines. “We will consolidate the result of the survey and coordinate and inquire from the Inter-Agency Task Force (on the coronavirus response) and the Department of Health (DoH) how the MSMEs can procure the vaccines,” Mr. Milan said in an online interview. He said they see the rollout of vaccines as a means to rebuilding people’s confidence in going out more, which has been the biggest challenge in reviving the local economy. “Hopefully, things will change once we start the vaccination program,” he said. Meanwhile, the Health department’s regional office has assured that cold storage facilities are being readied for the vaccines. “Our (Davao Region) capacity in most of our LGUs (local government units) are the 2°C to 8°C facilities. We have a partner that owns a cold room storage facility of -25°C degrees centigrade,” vaccination program team leader Janis V. Olavides said in a virtual presser last week. She added that they are looking at whether the region still needs to secure ultra-low temperature freezers to accommodate vaccines that require this storage setting. Davao is in the list of regions flagged to have increasing coronavirus cases released by the national government Tuesday. As of January 25, the region recorded 16,289 cases, of which 2,631 are active. Most of the active cases are in Davao City at 1,490. COVID medical care facilities are at moderate risk with 71% of the 62 ICU beds occupied, while isolation and ward beds are at occupancy levels of 56.6% and 49.7%, respectively. — Maya M. Padillo

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