The Daily Manila Shimbun


Military medical personnel to help in COVID-19 vaccination, DND chief says

January 26, 2021

The Armed Forces of the Philippines' medical personnel will help in the vaccination of the Filipinos, particularly those in the provinces, when the government rolls out its immunization program against coronavirus disease, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said.

During the televised meeting with President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday night, Lorenzana said the Department of National Defense has accepted the offer of Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship and Go Negosyo Founder Joey Concepcion III to train those who would administer the COVID-19 vaccination.

"We accepted their offer and their (military medical personnel) training will start, I think, next week and this will be completed before the vaccines arrive," he said.

The government is expecting the COVID-19 vaccines from Pfizer and China's Sinovac to arrive next month.

Lorenzana said the government could also utlize the four Philippine Navy ships, which have freezers with temperature ranging between -15 and -18 degrees and with total capacity of five tons.

"We can use these to transport the vaccines from Manila to the islands in the Visayas and also perhaps here in Luzon," Lorenzana said.

The Philippine Coast Guard, on the other hand, has nine vessels that have freezers and the temperature is -20 to -25 degrees with the total capacity of 526 cubic feet, the official said.

"The Armed Forces will be at the forefront in the rollout because we have lots of hospitals - Army hospitals - the area commands around the country," he added. Celerina Monte/DMS