EO issued for vaccination deployment and immunization program

BAGUIO CITY – (19 February 2021) – Mayor Benjamin Magalong issued last week Executive Order 23 for the vaccination and immunization program, with objectives and specific functions assigned per implementing agency.

Said EO specifics were pointed out by Health Services Office (HSO) head Dr. Rowena Galpo in a forum with Punong Barangays, Senior Citizens, Sangguniang Kabataaan and the medical sector.   

In the objective statement, the EO embodies the safe and successful inoculation of at least 70% of the target population to achieve “herd immunity.” The vaccine prioritization considers vulnerabilities, risks and needs; and  protection for those with additional risks and burdens to safeguard the well-being of others. Underlying societal, geographic and biomedical factors should also be considered, the EO states.

The EO also focuses on not having vaccine spoilage of allocations and other materials so that transmission of Covid-19 is mitigated and mortality is reduced, while protecting medical and health services providers. The availability of cold storage facilities for vaccine allocations from the point of receipt up to target vaccinees has been well-considered with assigned personnel from health facilities, the General Service Office (GSO), Department of Health (DOH) and other private partners, Galpo emphasized.

Macro, microplanning and carrying out of plans according to the national deployment and vaccination plan for Covid-19 is also focused on.   

Civil society groups, community organizations and partners from the private and non-government sector, the Baguio City Police, barangays, SKs, private clinics and medical societies, hospitals shall cooperate and coordinate as to their specific functions in information dissemination campaigns; logistics, traffic, peace and security operation; manpower, transportation; reports, monitoring, and financial concerns, the EO states.          

A city task force with the mayor as chair, Councilor Joel Alangsab as committee on Health, Sanitation, Ecology and Environmental Protection, Dr. Galpo as action officer and members from different government and private agencies, hospitals, and medical groups as members was also created. Said TF develops and enacts health policies, develop and oversee the Covid-19 vaccine development plan and implementation, authorize the mobilization of resources necessary, convene the vaccination operations center as needed and work in close coordination with the DOH National and Regional Offices.

 A vaccination operation center shall also function with the operations co-chair; planning, campaign management, monitoring and technical team; cold chain and logistic team, coordination team, vaccine safety, surveillance and response team; operation center secretariat, registry and data management, health care waste management committees.

Vaccination teams composed of screening, assessment, counselor, vaccinator, documenter or recorders, safety and security officers and supervisor; and AEFI composite teams composed of one monitoring and one surveillance officer; of whom must be a midwife, paramedic, nurse or pharmacist.

During the forum, the benefits of having a Covid-19 vaccine was emphasized by Assistant City Health Services Officer Dr. Celia Flor Brillantes, as protection for one’s self, family, neighbors and the community. It one is a health worker, patients would also be protected. A vaccine would help protect elderly and people with chronic conditions as they were observed to be more adversely affected with Covid-19, Brillantes.    

Vaccination keeps one from contracting Covid-19, a safe way to help build protection and is an important tool to help stop the pandemic, Brillantes further emphasized.

A priority list has been released as to who will be vaccinated within the seven-day immunization schedule. 

In Baguio City, field vaccination sites are at the Baguio City National High School (BCNHS) for City Camp, Aurora Hill, Lucban, Atab, Mines View, Pacdal and Quirino Hill; St. Vincent Gym is used for Irisan, Asin, Quezon Hill, Pinsao and Campo Filipino; while a wide area is being scouted for the use of Loakan, Atok Trail, Engineer’s Hill and Scout Barrio areas.

The Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center (BGHMC), Saint Louis University Hospital of the Sacred Heart (SLUHSH), Notre Dame de Lourdes Hospital, Pines Hospital, Baguio Medical Center and Philippine Military Academy facilities.

Orientation, simulation, motion and time study are ongoing for the vaccination teams.

The city’s vaccination teams shall work for 7 days, from 8 to 5PM with 15-minute and lunch break, with a projected 100 immunizations per day. Vaccinees are advised to “come in the best of health – had a good night’s sleep, breakfast, well-hydrated and had taken in medicines, if needed”, Galpo reminded. 

Vaccinees are advised to have the second dose for full protection, Galpo also said. – Julie G. Fianza