Lorenzana pleads to public: Get COVID-19 jabs please

Published September 28, 2021, 10:57 AM

by Martin Sadongdong

Department of National Defense (DND) Secretary Delfin Lorenzana on Monday night, Sept. 27, appealed to the public anew to get the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine as recent government data showed that most critical and intubated patients are unvaccinated.

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana reports the updates on COVID-19 situation in the country during the “Talk to the People” public address on Sept. 27, 2021. (Screenshot from RTVM livestream)

At the “Talk to the People” public address of President Duterte, Lorenzana said that 67 percent of COVID-infected patients at the intensive care units (ICU) and 84 percent of intubated patients nationwide are unvaccinated.

“Kaya naman patuloy tayong nananawagan sa ating mga kababayan na magpabakuna laban sa COVID-19 upang maiwasan ang pagkakahawa o pagdanas ng malalang sintomas na maaaring humantong sa pagkamatay (That’s why we continue to call on our countrymen to have themselves vaccinated against COVID-19 to prevent being infected or avoid experiencing severe symptoms that could lead to death),” said Lorenzana, who is also the chairman of the National Task Force (NTF) Against COVID-19.

As of Monday, the government has administered a total of 44,361,285 vaccine doses across the country. There were 23,777,705 Filipinos who have received their first dose while 20,583,580 others have been fully vaccinated.

This is still far from the target of the government to vaccinate 77 million Filipinos by the end of 2021 to reach herd immunity.

More than 69.69 million doses of vaccines have been delivered to the country since last February. On Tuesday night, the NTF said 390,000 doses of government procured Pfizer jabs were scheduled to be delivered.

Meanwhile, the national healthcare utilization rate dropped by three percentage points: from 71 percent last week to 68 percent this week, according to Lorenzana.

The healthcare utilization rate refers to the number of ICU, isolation beds, and ventilators that are currently in use in medical facilities.

The utilization of ICU beds and ward beds went down by one percent and three percent, respectively, but there was a recorded one percent increase in the use of isolation beds. He did not discuss other specific details on the data.

Further, in the first two weeks of the pilot testing of the Alert Level System in the National Capital Region (NCR), there were 2,221 houses that were placed under granular lockdown due to the detection of COVID-19 cases.

Also placed under granular lockdown were eight commercial establishments and schools, 27 residential buildings, 34 streets, 13 villages or subdivisions, nine blocks, and 14 settlements.

The new alert system replaced the previous declaration of community quarantines to place the responsibility of placing certain areas under lockdown on the hands of local government units (LGUs).

Lorenzana added that the number of recorded violations of the minimum public health standards (MPHS) increased from 2.1 million last week to 2.3 million this week.

“Mahigpit na ipinatupad ang minimum public health standards. Ngunit sa kabila nito, nakakalungkot na may karagdagang 262,391 na kaso ng paglabag sa linggong ito (The strict implementation of minimum public health standards remain. Despite this, it is saddening that there are an additional 262,391 recorded violations this week),” he said.