The provincial government of Pampanga is planning to raise about P200 to P300 million for the purchase of vaccines for the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19), saying it could not rely entirely on the national government for its vaccination program for Covid-19.
Also, Pampanga becomes the second city to establish and fund its own Covid-19 vaccination drive. Earlier, Zamboanga City announced it has allocated P200 million for the purchase of Covid-19 vaccines.
“Kailangan po nating magtulong-tulong para makabili ng epektibong anti-Covid-19 vaccine. Hindi po pwedeng iasa ang lahat sa national government [We need to help each other to be able to buy an effective vaccine against Covid-19. We cannot rely solely on the national government to do the vaccination program],” Governor Dennis Pineda said.
“We will all have to sacrifice some projects in order to prioritize further the health needs of our constituents,” he added.
The governor disclosed that the Covid-19 vaccines should be administered before the second quarter of 2021 to medical frontliners in public and private hospitals handling Covid-19 patients as well as to workers in private companies to strengthen the capacity of the health system while restarting the economy.
These groups would consist the first batch of recipients of vaccine allotments from the national and provincial government.
For the multi-sectoral fund drive, he urged local executives and legislative councils of the 19 towns and 3 cities to appropriate funds for the vaccination program.
He said Vice Governor Lilia Pineda and the Sangguniang Panlalawigan are supportive of larger allocation proposals for the Covid-19 vaccines.
He is also set to begin dialogues with the business sector, which is encouraged to put up counterpart funding and launch other means to help the province’s Covid-19 vaccination program.
He said the brand of vaccine should be approved by appropriate health authorities and purchased in accordance with the government’s procurement law. SOVEREIGNPH