MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte has urged local governments to use technology and other "advanced approaches" to prevent long lines in COVID-19 vaccination centers that may expose people to risks.
Duterte said people might get sick if they queue for too long to avail of the pandemic jabs.
"Making them queue for an hour or longer exposes them to other risks. Please use technology and advanced approaches to make sure the entire process is more effective," the president said during a public address last Monday.
"It’s just the same. The very thing that you are trying to avoid will happen if you do not do that. That's why there should be advanced approaches to make the entire process more effective," he added.
Duterte said local governments can give their constituents cards a day before their schedule for vaccination. Such an approach would expedite the inoculation and would make the process more convenient to the vaccine recipients, he added,
"All barangay captains have a list of the people in (their barangays). It behooves upon you guys to make sure that they are given the numbers and appointed time and not make them queue," the president said.
Duterte also reminded local governments to fast-track the giving of vaccines to avoid vaccine wastage.
"I also make this appeal: All our LGUs (local government units) implementing the national vaccination program, we need to administer the vaccines quickly...the vaccine will expire on a certain day. The longest is three, two months. If they are not effective anymore, they would just be thrown away," Duterte said.
"They should be placed in a storage where the temperature is controlled. (If we fail to do that), we (would) waste the vaccines which are important in making the people healthy," he added.
The Philippines, which has a population of more than 100 million, has so far secured 8.3 million doses of COVID-19 shots. About 5.1 million doses of COVID-19 jabs have been administered so far.
The government aims to inoculate at least 58 million by yearend.