About 300 kids aged 5 to 11 years old were vaccinated against COVID-19 last Monday at the Catanduanes State University vaccination center as the Department of Health (DOH) began the implementation of Resbakuna Kids in the province.
Similar vaccinations were conducted in two other venues in the capital town of Virac.
In his message at the CatSU vaccination center, DOH Regional Director Dr. Ernie Vera thanked Governor Joseph Cua and the 11 municipal mayors for their strong support for the COVID-19 vaccination program.
The LGU’s support, he said, made Catanduanes number one among the six Bicol provinces in vaccinating the adult population.
“As much as possible po, tibaad makapag-award kami ning herd immunity sa probinsiya,” RD Vera disclosed, adding that they are now reviewing the data being sent to the regional office.
He highlighted the cooperation of local government units on the island that is rarely seen in other provinces in the region, especially in implementing vaccination rollouts and preventive measures against COVID-19. Even if a lot of cases enter the province as it is very hard to control the flow of passengers from Manila, he pointed out that the fact that the platform is being followed is a big contribution to the fight against coronavirus and reflects the intellectual capacity of local health workers as well as the support of nongovernment organizations.
Dr. Vera said the multiple launchings of Resbakuna Kids is intended to cover as much as possible 100% of the 5-11 years-old population in Catanduanes.
He added that his office is now trying to address the problem of lack of syringes as reported by municipal health officers, with P900,000 worth of syringes bought recently for distribution to the Bicol provinces.
The DOH Bicol chief urged people not to be choosy as far as the brand of vaccine is concerned so that the vaccination pace will not lag.
He admitted that while he is no advocating for Sinovac, he said that after getting injected with two doses of Sinovac, he got infected with COVID-19 three weeks ago.
“Wara man po akong namati,” Vera stated. “That is an example na kung kumpleto kita sa bakuna, at least we can prevent the moderate to severe cases.”
In his remarks, Gov. Cua likewise expressed his gratitude to RD Vera for granting the requests of the province as far as the vaccine rollouts is concerned.
He shared the director’s optimism that Catanduanes would be the first outside the National Capital Region to achieve herd immunity against coronavirus, thanks to the DOH, health workers and everyone who helped in the campaign.
However, Cua urged the people to maintain social distancing and health protocols even if the pandemic seems to be on the wane.
Also present during the launching were Congressman Hector Sanchez, Vice Governor Shirley Abundo, PBM Santos Zafe, Virac Mayor Sinforoso Sarmiento and Panganiban Mayor Cesar Robles.