The Philippines has fully vaccinated nearly one million people against COVID-19 versus the target to immunize at least 50 million people for herd immunity in urban centers, authorities said.
Of the total 4,097,425 COVID vaccine doses administered as of May 22, 3,147,486 are first doses and 949,939 are second doses, according to data from the National Vaccination Operations Center.
The Philippines now ranks 37th out of 196 countries, 13th out of 47 Asian countries, and second out of 10 ASEAN nations in terms of COVID-19 vaccine rollout, the National Task Force on COVID-19 said.
Last week, authorities moved to convince people that vaccine brands shouldn't matter when getting immunized after people queued up for Pfizer jabs, causing crowding. All vaccines offer protection against severe COVID, authorities said.
Breaching the 4 million mark is a "milestone" for the country of 100 million people, said Sec. Carlito Galvez, the vaccine czar.
"We need to maintain this momentum and remain focused on building up our vaccine supply, ramping up our vaccination rate, and encouraging more of our countrymen to get the jab," Galvez said.
"I am confident that as we start inoculating our economic frontliners and indigenous population by June, we will be able to double this figure and vaccinate more than four million people as long as there is a steady supply of vaccines," he added.
The Philippines has so far received eight million doses of COVID-19 vaccines. The government is preparing to vaccinate the fourth priority group that includes delivery riders, grocery staff, teachers who are considered economic frontliners.
VACCINES FOR HERD IMMUNITY