PROTECTION. A young vaccinee is comforted by her guardian as she receives her Covid-19 jab in Las Piñas on Friday (Oct. 22, 2021). The vaccination included adolescents aged 12 to 17, following the initial rollout for the 15-17 age group one week ago. (PNA photo by Avito Dalan)

MANILA – More hospitals in the National Capital Region (NCR) have started the inoculation of adolescents aged 12 to 17 years old, according to National Task Force (NTF) against Covid-19 chief implementer, Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr., on Friday.

From eight hospitals during Phase 1 (15 to 17 years) on October 15, more than 20 hospitals and jabs sites conducted simultaneous inoculation for the younger set during Phase 2.

"Today, we mark the expansion of our vaccination and we included other hospitals in the whole of NCR," Galvez said in an interview at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport during the arrival of 698,600 AstraZeneca doses, procured by the private sector under the “Dose of Hope” program.

Galvez said the government is on a massive vaccination drive to achieve population protection against Covid-19 as soon as possible.

"We have to vaccinate all who are willing and at the same time, we will concentrate more on the vaccination of our children," he added.

Children with comorbidities are being prioritized.

So far, the Philippines has received 93,661,610 doses of Covid-19 vaccines, with 54,444,161 doses already administered nationwide.

"We are trying to prepare our defenses by massive vaccination and also looking at the possibility of really reorganizing refurbishing, reconstituting our hospitals and our healthcare workers," Galvez said, noting that 24,101,222 Filipinos are now fully protected against the disease.

"We are also confident that we can breach 100 million doses of vaccines that will be delivered by the end of the month," he added.

The initial list of Phase 2 venues include Caloocan City Medical Center (North and South), Ospital ng Malabon, Navotas City Hospital, Valenzuela City Emergency Hospital, Marikina Sports Complex (near Amang Rodriguez Memorial Medical Center), Quezon City General Hospital, St. Luke’s Medical Center Quezon City and Taguig, Ospital ng Maynila, Ospital ng Makati, SM Megamall Mega Vaccination Site (near Mandaluyong City Medical Center), Cardinal Santos Medical Center, Ospital ng Muntinlupa, Ospital ng Parañaque 1, University of Perpetual Help, and Pasay City General Hospital. (PNA)