Baguio prepares for pilot test of vaccines

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BAGUIO CITY – The city will be procuring the required freezers that will help in preserving the vaccines that will be made available by the national government for the pilot testing of the same to some 20 to 30 percent of the city’s population.

Mayor Benjamin B. Magalong stated that the local government is currently verifying the volume of vaccines that could be stored by the freezers so that the city will be able to purchase sufficient number of freezers that will be used once the vaccines will arrive in the country and eventually turned over to the city for the implementation of the pilot testing of the vaccination.

He said that the city will procure freezers capable of storing the Corona Virus Disease (COVID) 2019 vaccines from negative 2 to negative 8 degrees Celsius and similar freezers with a storage capacity of negative 40 up to negative 80 degrees Celsius as there are vaccines that need to be stored at the aforesaid freezing points.

According to him, Baguio City has been included as one of the pilot sites for the conduct of the vaccination once the vaccines will be made available in the country where the frontliners, uniformed personnel, among others will be the priority sectors in the initial wave of vaccination that will be done in the city.

The mayor claimed that the counterpart of the local government once the vaccines will be made available is for the assurance of the storage facilities that will help in preserving the vaccines for the expected schedule of the vaccinations among the identified percentage of the populace.

While the vaccines are yet to arrive in the city, he pointed out that the local government will continue to be strict in the sustained implementation of the basic health and safety protocols to contain the spread of the deadly virus in the city to allow the gradually and safe recovery of the local economy that had been heavily impacted by the prevailing pandemic.

He stipulated that the city will have to immediately procure the needs storage facilities to ensure the city’s readiness in time for the implementation of the vaccination of identified beneficiaries once the supply of vaccines will arrive in the city.

The mayor explained that for the vaccines from China, the freezers having a negative 2 to negative 8 freezing point will be able to store the vaccines that will be delivered for the identified beneficiaries in the city.

Magalong expressed his gratitude to the health authorities and the inter-agency task force for the management of emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases for selecting the city as one of the areas that will pilot test the vaccines that will be arriving for the benefit of the residents.

He urged the residents and visitors to continue adhering to the practice of the basic health and safety protocols, particularly the mandatory wearing of face masks and shields, the observance of physical distancing and the practice of personal hygiene, because the same remains to be the best defense for them to avoid contracting the virus and transmitting the same to their family members.

He emphasized that the COVID cases in the city remain to be manageable as the same is on a decreasing trend over the past several weeks although the possibility of surges in the future remains likely.

By Dexter A. See

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