Out of the 2,070 individuals who lost their lives to Covid-19 in Manila, over 1,400 were found to be unvaccinated, the Manila Health Department said.
Manila Health Department (MHD) Officer Dr. Arnold 'Poks' Pangan cracks a joke during the "MACHRA's Balitaan" held by the Manila City Hall Reporters' Association's at the Harbor View Restaurant, sending MACHRA President (left) Itchie Cabayan and Vice President Andi Garcia bursting into laughter.
During a news forum organized by the Manila City Hall Reporters' Association (MACHRA) at the Harbor View Restaurant, MHD head Dr. Arnold “Poks” Pangan said that the decline in the number of individuals receiving booster shots may be a contributing factor to the recent surge in Covid cases.
He then expressed concern over the lack of interest shown by both unvaccinated individuals and those who have yet to receive their primary vaccines, attributing this trend to the easing of restrictions.
In the midst of the pandemic, the motivation to get vaccinated was reinforced by the requirement to present vaccination certificates or proof of immunization to gain access to malls, restaurants, and similar establishments.
However, Pangan noted that with the relaxation of these measures, public interest in vaccination has significantly diminished.
He clarified that the World Health Organization’s (WHO’s) lifting of the Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) for Covid-19 does not mean the virus is gone.
Pangan underscored that Covid-19 remains prevalent in the city, as evidenced by the recent rise in cases which has prompted Manila's city-run hospitals to allocate a total of 183 beds for Covid patients. Currently, the bed utilization rate stands at 15.4 percent.