Metro Manila Development Authority chairman Benjamin “Benhur” Abalos Jr. said during the Dec. 9 culmination of the Bayanihan, Bakunahan vaccination program at SM Megamall in Mandaluyong City that the target population of the National Capital Region (NCR) has already been 100% vaccinated.
“100% na ang Metro Manila sa bakuna. Talagang natapos natin ito,” said Abalos.
The National Capital Region, the country’s economic center that has about a 13.4 million population according to the 2020 Census, is among the government’s priority regions to receive the bulk of vaccine supply.
The government earlier set the target to vaccinate 70% of the actual population of the region, which is about 9.8 million individuals.
According to the National COVID-19 Vaccination Dashboard, as of Dec. 8, NCR has over 9.2 million complete dose of vaccines administered to its residents.
The Department of Interior and Local Government earlier said 23 highly urbanized cities have already achieved immunity, which included the 17 local government units that comprise Metro Manila.
The government recently held its week-long national vaccination drive from Nov. 29 to Dec. 3 (initially a three-day event), where 10.2 million vaccine doses were administered, based on the National Vaccination Operations Center data, according to the National Task Force Against COVID-19.
Another round of the vaccination program is set for Dec. 15 to 17, as the government aims to vaccinate seven million individuals to complete the 54 million vaccinations by the end of the year.
According to the Department of Health National COVID-19 Vaccination Dashboard, the Philippines has a total of 94.2 million vaccines administered as of Dec. 8, while 39.6 million have been fully vaccinated.
Vaccine czar and National Task Force Against COVID-19 chief implementer Carlito Galvez Jr., who was also at the event, said he is confident that the country will be able to hit its target of fully vaccinating 54 million Filipinos.
Galvez said the government’s aggressive vaccine rollout is among the measures it is taking to prepare for the Omicron variant, which the World Health Organization classified as a variant of concern due to its number of mutations.
For his part, Steven Tan, president of SM Supermalls, which is among the partner malls of the national vaccination drive, said over 300,000 doses were administered at 66 SM malls from Nov. 29 to Dec. 1.
During the event, Mandaluyong City Mayor Menchie Abalos announced that the city of over 425,000 people has administered over one million COVID-19 vaccines as of Dec. 8.