COVID vaccines effective vs. Omicron surge --- Nograles

Cabinet Secretary and Acting Presidential Spokesperson Karlo Nograles has underscored the effectiveness of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccines amid the current surge in new cases of the dreaded illness.

(Hakan Nural/ Unsplash)

“Please allow us to reiterate that the protection provided by vaccines comes not just in the form of reducing the likelihood of infection–it also comes in the form of reducing the risk of developing severe COVID symptoms," Nograles said during a virtual press conference Tuesday, Jan. 11.

"Pag bakunado po kayo, malaki po ang chance na kung mahawa man kayo ng COVID, magiging mild lang po ang symptoms ninyo (If you are vaccinated, there's a big chance that you'll only contract mild symptoms of COVID),” emphasized Nograles, who also serves as spokesperson of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF).

The Philippines is currently grappling with a ferocious new surge in COVID-19 cases that's supposedly being fueled by the Omicron variant.

“Kahit matindi makahawa ang Omicron, hindi po tayo helpless (We are not helpless even if Omicron is very contagious); we can do something about it," he said.

"Magpabakuna na po tayo, anumang brand ito, para maging ligtas, para sa karagdagang proteksyon natin, ng ating mga mahal sa buhay at ng ating komunidad (In order to be safe and to give ourselves, our loved ones and ouu community additional protection, let's get ourselves vaccinated--the vaccine brand doesn't matter)," stressed the Palace official.

The country is coming off a record day in terms of new COVID-19 infections last Jan. 10, when it recorded a whopping 33,169 cases.

According to Nograles, the vast majority or 97.1 percent of the 33,169 cases tallied exhibited mild symptoms or are asymptomatic.

He said that while there are more COVID-positive cases being recorded now compared to the previous surge last September, there are less people developing severe and critical forms of the disease.

“Dahil ito sa malawakang pagbabakuna (This is due to widespread vaccination)," he pointed out.

"Hindi kami magsasawa sa pagpa-paalala: Ang mga bakuna natin laban sa COVID-19 ay may Emergency Use Authorization mula sa Food and Drug Administration. Lahat ng ito ay ligtas at epektibo. Lahat–anuman ang brand–ay nagbibigay ng proteksyon laban sa severe at critical cases ng coronavirus (We will not stop in reminding you: Our vaccines against COVID-19 have Emergency Use Authorization from the Food and Drug Administration. All of these are safe and effective. Vaccines of all brands give protection against severe and critical cases of coronavirus)," Nograles said.