Sultan Kudarat Rep. Princess Rihan Sakaluran urged the government to lay down a COVID-19 vaccination program plan to ensure the “just, fair, and equal” distribution of the vaccines nationwide and ensure that the vulnerable sectors such as senior citizens, medical and essential workers, and the country’s poor will be prioritized.
The neophyte lawmaker stressed the need for the government to prepare such plan and make sure that the vaccines are equitably distributed to lower income groups and to the most vulnerable sectors such as elderly and health workers.
“We need a coordinated strategy to ensure that vaccine procured by the government be used and distributed to the fullest to the most vulnerable sectors of the society such as senior citizens, medical and essential workers,” she said.
Sakaluran, a member of the House Committee on Health, filed House Resolution No. 1332 calling for the creation of an Inter-Agency Task Force to formulate, develop, map out, and lay down the policies for a Philippine COVID-19 Vaccination Program Plan to ensure “an orderly, fair, equal, and just system for the distribution of the vaccines taking into account the most vulnerable sectors of the society.”
She expressed concern about the studies made by Oxford Committee for Famine Relief (OXFAM) which revealed that “even if all five of the most-advanced vaccine candidates succeed, there will not be enough vaccine for most of the world’s people until 2022.”
This is pretty alarming for countries like the Philippines scrambling for access to this COVID-19 vaccine, the Mindanaoan lawmaker said.
“We should also prepare for a situation that prices these pharmaceutical companies may set for these vaccines may be out of reach for countries like the Philippines, thus, ending up waiting and queuing for the life-saving vaccine,” Sakaluran said.