Malacañang urged the public to get vaccinated against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) if they want the Philippines a zero mortality rate.
Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque made the statement after the World Health Organization (WHO) Western Pacific Region reported that the Philippines had the highest number of new cases and new deaths.
In a press conference on Wednesday, June 30, Roque was unsure about the report but said if the public wants the Philippines to not record any deaths, then they should get vaccinated as this would prevent severe symptoms and even death.
“Kung gusto po nating zero mortality [rate], magpabakuna na po ang lahat (If we want zero mortality [rate], please get vaccinated),” he said.
“Ang bakuna po, bagama’t ito’y hindi garantiya na hindi na kayo magkaka-COVID, ito ay garantiya naman na hindi kayo magkakasakit ng seryoso o ‘di kaya mamamatay dahil sa COVID (While it is not a guarantee that you won’t catch the disease, getting vaccinated can ensure that you won’t get sick or even die because of COVID-19),” he added.
According to Roque, the Philippines was actually consistent with a 1.7 percent case fatality rate, a percentage lower than the global average of 2.1 percent.
“That is why continuously palagi nating pinasasalamatan ang ating mga medical frontliners kasi (That is why we continuously thank our medical frontliners because), clearly, as far as treatment is concerned, we seem to be ahead of the rest of the world, which explains our below-average mortality rate of 1.7,” he said.
The Philippines is currently trying to prevent the spread of the more contagious Delta variant of COVID-19 that was said to have ushered the deadly second wave of infections in India early this year.
Malacañang has been consistent in reminding the public to follow minimum health protocols of wearing face masks and shields, handwashing, and physical distancing.
This month, President Duterte decided to keep the wearing of face shields mandatory both indoors and outdoors as a measure to prevent the spread of the disease. Health experts said the Delta variant was 40 percent more infectious outdoors and 60 percent more infectious indoors.
To date, the Philippines has reported 1,408,058 COVID-19 cases, 24,557 of whom died while 1,333,464 recovered.