Over 500,000 Central Visayas residents vaccinated

MORE than half a million eligible individuals in Central Visayas have been inoculated against Covid-19 as of Thursday, July 15, 2021.

Dr. Mary Jean Loreche, spokesperson for the Visayas Covid-19 Vaccination Operations Center (VVOC), on Friday, July 16, reported that 542,229 individuals from the region have received their first dose, while 210,407 of them are fully vaccinated.

Of the fully vaccinated individuals, 146,356 are from Cebu; 34,200 from Bohol; 19,544 from Negros Oriental; and 10,307 from Siquijor.

She said of those vaccinated with the first dose, the VVOC received 4,607 reports of minor adverse events following immunization (AEFIs) and 21 cases of serious AEFIs.

Loreche said among the most common minor AEFIs are headache, pain at the injection site, fever, chills and elevated blood pressure and heart rate.

For those vaccinated with the second dose, the VVOC logged 803 cases of minor AEFIs and five serious AEFIs.

Loreche asked the public to be mindful of one of the common serious AEFIs, developing a severe allergic reaction manifested by difficulty in breathing that, in some cases, may also need prolonged hospital stay.

The region needs to vaccinate 6,842 more individuals for it to completely vaccinate all persons with comorbidities (or those belonging to priority group A3) who registered themselves for vaccination as of July 13.

As of July 15, the government has vaccinated 272,085 of the 278,927 individuals with comorbidities. Of these, 68,870 are fully vaccinated.

The vaccination for healthcare workers is also nearing completion, based on the government’s accomplishment rate as of July 15 and the number of healthcare workers registered for vaccination as of June 22.

Of the 131,989 registered healthcare workers, 122,113 or 92.5 percent have received the vaccine, with 89,269 of them having completed the two doses.

However, the VVOC still continues to urge those belonging to priority group A4 (frontline personnel in essential sectors) to sign up because as of July 5, only 30,639 have registered and 4,200 have been given their first dose.

Loreche said economic workers in commuter transport, market vendors, supermarket and delivery services workers, workers in manufacturing, frontline personnel in basic education, workers in law, justice and security guards, among others, belong to this priority group.

As for the vaccination of senior citizens (priority group A2), the government has covered 131,516 of the 538,216 senior citizens listed for vaccination.

Meanwhile, the Department of Education (DepEd) 7 continued to urge its teaching and non-teaching personnel to register for the ongoing vaccination against Covid-19.

Salustiano Jimenez, DepEd 7 director, said about 81 percent of DepEd 7’s teaching and non-teaching personnel eligible for vaccination have registered themselves.

The region has about 82,000 teaching and non-teaching staff.

“The remaining, about 20 percent, we keep on advocating to them, explaining to them how important this vaccine is, not only to protect themselves, but also to protect their loved ones, their families and the learners and the clients,” he told SunStar Cebu.

He said providing protection to teachers and other DepEd personnel, who are part of the priority group A4, is also part of their preparation for the incoming school year, which, as approved by President Rodrigo Duterte, will start on September 13.

He said of the more than 100 employees of the DepEd 7 office, about 99 percent are fully vaccinated.

He also said for the Division of Naga City, about 65 percent and more than 50 percent of the personnel of the Mandaue City Division have been inoculated against Covid-19.

Jimenez said the Sept. 13 opening of classes will give them ample time to prepare for the school year (SY) 2021-2022; this, as the previous school year officially closed on July 10 and most of the schools are still holding their closing ceremonies.

Moreover, he said the regional Basic Education Learning Continuity Plan (BELCP) for SY 2021-2022 will tentatively be available next week as each division is given until July 16 to submit its enhanced BELCP.

He said so far, no errors have been reported. Each division was instructed to re-evaluate and re-check the quality of the modules used last year for the incoming school year.

Jimenez earlier said half a million learners who are incoming Kindergarten, Grade 1, Grade 7 and Grade 11 had been enrolled during the early registration.

He then asked the parents to continue to be cooperative and supportive even as DepEd continues to implement distance learning.

“Whatever the challenge is, education must continue,” he said. (WBS)