Opposition Senator Leila de Lima on Monday welcomed the arrival of experts from Israel who will assist in the Philippine government’s COVID-19 vaccination program.
De Lima thanked the Israel’s Ministry of Health for helping out the country in rolling out the COVID-19 vaccines and hopes that their heath experts could indeed provide sufficient strategies to deploy highly sensitive vaccines and address the vaccine hesitancy in the Philippines.
The detained senator that Israel has the highest vaccination rate in the world and the Philippine government can learn and adopt the best practices being applied in that country when it comes to vaccination.
De Lima lamented that the country’s vaccination rollout is still lagging behind other countries and vaccine hesitancy among Filipinos has yet to be addressed.
“We need to make sure that the strategies and policies of the government in addressing COVID-19 is efficient and correct, especially in vaccinating Filipinos because this is the only way to put a stop to this pandemic,” de Lima said.
Reports said the Israelite health experts Avraham Ben Zaken, Adam Nicholas Segal, and Dafna Segol arrived in Manila last June 20 and will stay in the country from June 20 to 25.
They will be discussing with local experts the handling of highly sensitive vaccines such as the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna shots and lessons to increase public confidence in vaccines.
“As I have said before, the government needs to step up its vaccination campaign to protect the lives of as many people as possible, that is why the help from experts are most welcome,” she said.
De Lima also said she hopes that the foreign experts would also share their own strategies on how to convince the public to get the jabs.
The government’s COVID-19 vaccination information drive, she noted, is still lacking.
De Lima noted surveys conducted months into the rollout have reportedly shown that only three (3) out of 10 Filipino adults were willing to get vaccinated.
“In addressing vaccine hesitancy, the government needs a solid strategy or campaign that would help build public trust on vaccines, and remind them that its benefits far outweigh the risks,” she stressed.