Muntinlupa to buy additional 200,000 doses of Astrazeneca vaccine, starts training health workers for vaccination roll-out

The City of Muntinlupa is set to order an additional 200,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine from AstraZeneca as more local government units in the country sign a purchase deal with the British pharmaceutical firm and the national government.

Mayor Jaime Fresnedi announced that the local government of Muntinlupa requested for an additional purchase of 200,000 doses of AstraZeneca vaccine as part of an earlier tripartite agreement with the National Task Force against COVID-19 (NTF) and AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals Philippines.

Recently, Muntinlupa secured 100,000 doses to initially inoculate residents in high priority groups.

The local exec stressed that the agreement is only an augmentation of the national government’s vaccination plan. He said that the Department of Health will continue to provide additional vaccines for the inoculation of the rest of Muntinlupa residents.

Muntinlupa earmarked a 170 million pesos initial budget for the procurement of COVID-19 vaccines once they are available and approved for use in the country.

National Immunization Program Coordinator for COVID-19 in Muntinlupa Dra. Maria Rochelle Abat said that 28 health workers from the City Health Office were already trained for the vaccine administration as part of the local immunization program.

The training of Muntinlupa’s medical personnel was facilitated by UNICEF, World Health Organization, and Department of Health last January 12-13. Participants were trained for vaccine administration, managing the side effects of the vaccine, vaccine storage and handling practices, health communication, and waste management.

Abat noted that the training of other health workers from Ospital ng Muntinlupa, including frontliners from local private hospitals and clinics, is still ongoing.

Muntinlupa City Health Office (CHO) prepares for the operational logistics of the vaccination program and will be purchasing storage equipment for the vaccines.

CHO is also coordinating with local storage rental facilities in the city for the cold chain management of vaccines needing special storage requirements.

The local government is set to launch an information campaign to raise awareness and provide clarification on the immunization program. An online survey on the COVID-19 vaccine in Muntinlupa is currently being conducted by the Management Information System Office and the Public Information Office.

Recently, OCTA Research’s Tugon ng Masa survey noted that only 25% of respondents in Metro Manila are willing to get an anti-coronavirus vaccine shot when the vaccine becomes available in the country.

As of January 14, Muntinlupa City has 55 active cases, 5,222 confirmed cases with 5,000 recoveries, 167 reported deaths, 63 suspect cases, and 277 probable cases.

*Source: Public Information Office