BACOLOD CITY – Mayor Evelio Leonardia has appealed to the national government anew to send more vaccines as cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) remain to be alarming here.
On Wednesday, the city government said in a report that Leonardia sent a letter request dated July 1 to Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr., chief implementer and vaccine czar of the National Task Force Against Covid-19.
He told Galvez that since March 5, the city has fully vaccinated only 11,047 persons and partially vaccinated 53,466, out of the population of 624,987 because of the limited supply of vaccines.
“Vaccination is a crucial strategy in ending this pandemic,” Leonardia said, adding that more doses would be of great help to improve the Covid-19 situation here.
“Bacolod City was recently included as one of the NCR Plus 10 priority areas for vaccination, however, the only vaccine we have received after the announcement was a mere 7,800 doses received last June 30. We have not received any additional vaccines thereafter,” Leonardia added.
In an apparent response, the National Vaccination Operations Center dispatched 10,000 vials of Sinovac’s CoronaVac here on Tuesday.
Leonardia said although the city government is doing its best to contain the spread of the virus, Bacolod is still “experiencing an alarmingly persistent surge of Covid-19 cases,” closing the month of June with the highest number of cases since the start of the pandemic.
“In behalf of our people, therefore, I most respectfully and earnestly request that we be given additional vaccines in order to be able to accelerate the pace of vaccinations and to move through the priority groups more quickly,” he appealed to Galvez.
“Hospitalizations have hit record levels, and although we have recently added additional rooms and beds, our temporary treatment and monitoring facilities are reaching full capacity,” the mayor said, adding that hospitals in the city are reporting staff shortages and precipitous declines in finances due to non-payment of PhilHealth claims.
Leonardia said the city government believes that if it ramps up vaccinations, it will be able to significantly reduce Covid-19 deaths and hospitalizations.
As of July 7, Bacolod has reported 13,669 Covid-19 cases, including 1,542 active cases; 11,808 recoveries; and 319 deaths, records of the Department of Health-Western Visayas showed. (PNA)