To continue its COVID-19 vaccination program and encourage more people to get vaccinated, the Philippine Red Cross (PRC), through its Bakuna Bus, returned to Malabon City in Barangay Longos on May 20.
Over 100 patients, including senior citizens and immunocompromised, were able to receive their 1st booster shots. They were also advised to monitor their health conditions in preparation for their 2nd booster shots. The Department of Health issued an announcement on May 18 that senior citizens and the immunocompromised can join health workers in availing of the second booster shot.
“Nagbabalik ang Red Cross dito sa Malabon upang ipagpatuloy ang ating vaccination program. Ang ating Bakuna Bus ay handang sumuong sa mga liblib na lugar upang mas mahikayat natin ang ating mga kababayan na magpabakuna. Walang maiiwan sa ating laban kontra COVID-19,” PRC Chairman and CEO Richard Gordon said.
Providing a mobile COVID-19 vaccination program, the Bakuna Bus is strategically designed with facilities in compliance with the vaccine administration protocols, COVID-19 vaccines and other supplies, and space for volunteers and staff. With this interior, the PRC delivers a more efficient service to achieve herd immunity amid the pandemic, fulfilling its mandate to assist the government in its COVID-19 efforts.
To date, the PRC has administered 1,178,776 vaccination doses with 20 Bakuna Buses deployed in different areas in the Philippines.
The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) started administering second booster shots of Covid-19 vaccines today, April 27, 2022, in Mandaluyong City, to the elderly and the immunocompromised. The Philippines’ Department of Health announced last April 13, 2022 that the Food and Drug Administration has approved the administration of Covid-19 second booster shots to the elderly, the immunocompromised, and frontline health workers.
PRC Chairman and CEO, Senator Richard “Dick” J. Gordon, advised the immunocompromised who are fully vaccinated and have the first booster shot to get the second booster shot if the required time interval has lapsed. “Hinihikayat ko ang ating mga kababayan na immunocompromised na fully vaccinated at may first booster shot na kumuha ng second booster shot sa akmang panahon,” Chairman Gordon said.
The spouses Ninfa and Nicanor Viray, who are both elderly and immunocompromised, had their second booster shots at the PRC today. Ms. Viray, 84 years old, is a cancer patient who just had a mastectomy. Mr. Viray, 85 years old, is a diabetes patient. They both had their first booster in December 2021. The second booster shot against Covid-19 is given at
least four months after the first booster shot, but the interval could be earlier for other patients if prescribed by a doctor.
“That we’ll be more protected from more severe symptoms owing to our age. We’d like to be as protected as possible, considering that sometimes we are also compelled to go out of the house to buy some basic needs,” was Ms. Viray’s answer when asked what she hoped the second booster shot would do. She added that getting the second booster shot is part of their taking care of themselves, because their decisions about their health affect the rest of the family.
When asked how they would encourage other members of the elderly population to get vaccinated, Ms. Viray says she would show them how she and her husband have relative capacity to still enjoy life, because they can be mobile and interact with people with confidence despite their advanced years. Mr. Viray shares that his style is personal; he talks to his friends about the benefits of getting vaccinated.
Ms. Viray says they try to observe all the health protocols as much as possible, because they don’t want to abuse the new lease on life they are enjoying because of the protection that the vaccines give. Mr. Viray attests that since he got vaccinated, he has felt more assured that he is protected. The couple is keen on doing their share in educating the community about the collective nature and solution to the Covid-19 public health emergency.
The PRC’s vaccination efforts are part of its mandate as auxiliary to the government in its humanitarian tasks. The PRC started administering Covid-19 vaccines in March 2021. To date, it has administered 1,153,200 doses of Covid-19 vaccines and boosters through its Bakuna Centers, Bakuna Teams, and Bakuna Buses nationwide. It has fully vaccinated 367,985 individuals.
The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) now has 20 Bakuna buses, the latest of which is currently deployed in Pangasinan and is supported by the Coca-Cola Foundation.
The PRC Bakuna Bus is a bus whose interior is set up with facilities for administering vaccines, Covid-19 vaccines and supplies, and space for vaccinators. It is PRC’s way of bringing the vaccines and information to the people, assuaging their hesitations to get vaccinated.
“Patuloy ang ating laban sa Covid-19 sa pamamagitan ng bakuna at RT-PCR tests. Hindi titigil ang Red Cross na gawin ang dapat gawin upang marating ang herd immunity,” the PRC Chairman and CEO, Senator Dick Gordon, said.
Also dubbed “Health on Wheels,” the Bakuna Bus will provide a mobile Covid-19 vaccination capability in Pangasinan, initially to the fourth district, specifically to the municipalities of San Fabian, Mangaldan, San Jacinto, and Rosales.
The country’s premier humanitarian organization continues to support the National COVID-19 vaccination program of the government as it launched the vaccination of minors aged five to eleven years old in the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) Zamboanga City Chapter yesterday, February 15, 2022.
“Ang Red Cross volunteers ay patuloy na nagpapadala ng mga bakuna sa mga tao, at palagi naming tinitiyak ang kaligtasan at pagiging epektibo ng mga bakuna dahil. Tulong-tulong tayong upang mapigilan na ang pandemya,” reiterates PRC Chairman and CEO Senator Dick Gordon.
According to the PRC Health Services, volunteers from the chapter administered 204 doses of vaccines manufactured by Pfizer, Moderna, Astra Zeneca, Sinovac, and Sputnik. 90 out of 204 administered doses were for minors aged five to eleven years old who received their primary shots of Pfizerer yesterday morning.
As of February 15, 2022, the PRC Zamboanga City Chapter has administered a total of 36,140 doses while fully vaccinating 14,488 individuals since opening their Bakuna Center last September 2021 in partnership with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).
The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) vaccinated over 3,050 individuals through its bakuna bus last Sept. 03, 2021, prioritizing individuals belonging to the A1-A3 categories.
The Bakuna Bus is PRC’s 16-fleet of mobile vaccines, which roams around the different parts of the country vaccinating communities even in far-flung areas. The bakuna bus was first used during the polio-measles & rubella vaccination.
“We need to ramp up our vaccination, mas marami ang hindi nabakunahan, mas mataas ang chance na mas marami ang magkaka severe cases dahil sa COVID-19. All vaccines work, the best way to protect yourself from COVID-19 is vaccination,” Sen. Dick Gordon said.
All the vaccines administered by the bakuna bus are free of charge. PRC through the leadership of Chairman Gordon handles all the expenses and allowances of manpower to operate the 16 bakuna bus and 20 bakuna centers.
The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) deployed its Bakuna bus to Isabela and Cagayan to help the local government unit (LGU) to inoculate residents belonging to the A1 – A3 priority groups starting September 06, 2021.
PRC under the leadership of Chairman Sen. Dick Gordon with coordination with the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) for the management of Emerging Infectious Disease will deploy its Bakuna Bus for COVID-19 vaccination.
“Laging handang tumulong at magbigay pag-asa ang Red Cross sa mga nangangailangan lalo na ngayong pandemya. We want to give protection to the most vulnerable by giving them access to vaccines that will prevent them from getting severe cases due to COVID-19,” Sen. Dick Gordon said.
Aside from the vaccination program by the PRC in the said provinces, the PRC Cagayan chapter also deployed its Hot Meals on Wheels to provide ready-to-eat meals to 1,796 children, pregnant women, senior citizens, and persons with disabilities in-home quarantine.
PRC Isabela Chapter through the directive of Sen. Dick Gordon also conducted livelihood programs to the most vulnerable families in Isabela by providing 10,000 cash assistance to 450 families to support them in their pangkabuhayan.
“Our goal at the very start is to alleviate human suffering and uplift human dignity. Ang binibigay ng red cross ay tulong na may kasamang dignidad upang makatayo ang bawat pamilya sa kanilang mga paa at patuloy na makaahon sa kahirapan dulot ng pandemya,” Gordon said.