LGUs should focus on Covid-19 booster vaccination — Concepcion

Published May 23, 2022, 2:58 PM

by Raymund Antonio

With the elections over, it is time for the local government units (LGUs) to help improve the country’s Covid-19 vaccine booster dose rate, Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship and Go Negosyo founder Joey Concepcion said on Monday, May 23.

Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion speaks during the Laging Handa public briefing on Monday, May 23. (Screenshot from PCOO via Facebook)

President Duterte’s economic adviser noted he is not aware if the incoming administration of presumptive president Ferdinand Marcos Jr. plans to continue Duterte’s vaccination program.

It will be for nothing, however, if the vaccines will just go to waste since Filipinos are not getting their booster shots.

“Well, now, halos tapos na ang eleksiyon natin at siguro [ang] mga governors, mayors natin ay makakapag-focus dito sa mga bakuna drive natin, (the elections are almost over and the governors, our mayors could already focus on our vaccine drive) especially sa (on the) booster shots,” he said during the Laging Handa public briefing.

“Tama rin ang sinasabi nila [na] hanapin ang mga hindi bakunado, kumbinsihin natin [sila] na talagang importante ito habang may mga dosage pa tayo (What they said is correct to look for the unvaccinated and let’s convince them that this is really important while we still have dosage),” Concepcion added.

Currently, the country has only given booster doses to 13.8 million Filipinos, as opposed to some 69.3 million who have already completed their primary series of Covid-19 vaccines.

READ: DOH says over 40 million Filipinos yet to receive Covid-19 booster shots

While the government launched a “massive campaign” with the “boost to the max” aired on social media, newspapers, and radio, Concepcion noted that LGUs will play a bigger role in campaigning for their constituents to get their booster shots.

The official also thumbed down the possibility of raising the alert level in the country from 1 to 2 or 3 because the economy will suffer.

“Dapat huwag nating itaas iyong alert levels natin ‘no. Kahit tumaas iyong infection level, kahit thousands iyan pero iyong hospital capacity natin ay talagang mababa pa rin, dapat tuluy-tuloy pa rin itong Alert Level 1 ‘no (We should not raise our alert levels. Even if the infection level increased, even if it is thousands but our hospital capacity remains low, Alert Level 1 should continue),” he said.

Duterte’s economic adviser explained that this is how other countries managed not to impose strict lockdowns despite the rising number of Covid-19 infections.

He added that the country needs to keep its borders open despite threats of new Covid-19 variants because the economy will suffer if tourism will be halted once more.

Concepcion described the country as “moving forward” with mobility “doing well” and businesses “coming back.”

He downplayed the threat of new Omicron variants, with the new one being detected locally, because the country has a surplus of vaccines.

“Well, I am not that worried because what I believed is that at this point in time, while our immunity is starting to wane, we still have a lot of vaccines with us. Ang importante lang dito (What’s important here) is we implement and vaccinate our people with the boosters,” he said.