Tabuk brings vaccination campaign to barangays

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TABUK CITY, Kalinga – Mayor Darwin Estrañero told punong barangays to draw up their respective master list of residents willing to be vaccinated as the City Health Services Office (CHSO) prepares to bring vaccination efforts down to the barangay level in a bid to increase vaccination rate.

Mayor Estrañero told punong barangays to enlist individuals ready to be jabbed on the day of the vaccination drive in their barangay to avoid wasting the Pfizer vaccines which have stringent temperature requirements.

In the coming days, the CHSO will aim to vaccinate 2,761 individuals daily to meet the “tall order” of the Department of Health-Cordillera (DOH-CAR) for Tabuk City to fully vaccinate 70 percent of its target population by December 30, 2021.

DOH-CAR Assistant Regional Director Dr. Amelita Pangilinan personally came to Tabuk today to meet with the mayor, health officials, doctors, and punong barangays to discuss the vaccination targets and come up with strategies to ramp up vaccination.

Bringing the vaccination to the barangay level is one such strategy eyed to boost vaccination coverage, especially in remote barangays.

On Thursday, CHSO head Dr. Henrietta Bagayao will meet with the heads of the four rural health units to draw up the barangay vaccination schedule and to prorate the 2,761 daily vaccination target among the 43 barangays.

Meanwhile, a coordination meeting with punong barangays is set on Friday for the implementation of the ramped-up vaccination strategy.

“Masapul nga maikkan kayo amin ti target nu manu ti bakunaan yu ta nu ready dayta nga target sa tayon tu alaen diay agapu Provincial Health Office nga bakuna ta paggigiddanen tayon, pagtitinnulungan tayo nga ibakuna amin daytuy tapnu mabiit tayo maala diay 70%,” Mayor Estrañero told punong barangays.

Dr. Pangilinan said the regional office is counting on Tabuk, with its high population and relatively faster vaccination program, to raise the vaccination rates for the whole province. With the steady supply of vaccines arriving in the country, vaccine scarcity is no longer an issue in the goal to achieve herd immunity by year-end, she said.

Provincial Health Office chief Dr. Edward Tandingan said his office is ready to deploy some 14,000 initial Pfizer doses to Tabuk to help achieve targets.

Dr. Pangilinan said Tabuk needs to vaccinate 49,515 individuals with the first dose by November 30, and 59,395 individuals with the second dose by December 30 to meet the government’s target of herd immunity this year.

But at the current vaccination coverage of 26.38 percent, with only an average of 392 individuals jabbed per day, it would take Tabuk approximately 56 weeks or roughly nine months to fully vaccinate its target population of 80, 683.

Dr. Pangilinan noted that the vaccination coverage among senior citizens in particular is lagging behind.

Dr. Pangilinan solicited the help of the punong barangays in generating vaccine demand among their constituents. “The message is no one should be left behind. While vaccination is not mandatory, awan kuma ti mabatbati,” she said.  By Iryll Sicnao