MARAWI CITY, Lanao del Sur (PIA)–Intensifying the vaccination efforts for coronavirus disease (COVID)-19 in the province of Lanao del Sur, various interventions of the government alongside private stakeholders are continuously pushed through to garner additional citizens to partake in the nationwide program.
Integrated Provincial Health Office (IPHO) Technical Services Chief Dr. Apasrah Macumbal-Mapupuno bared that the province has been encountering challenges amidst the implementation of the countrywide vaccination program.
She said these included vaccine hesitancy, the proliferation of fake vaccination cards, inadequate participation of municipal and barangay officials, limited number of health workers in rural heal units and hospitals, restricted access to some barangays due to local conflicts, bloated population, and unreachable places due to being located in geographically isolated disadvantaged areas (GIDAs), among others.
To respond to these concerns, the IPHO in partnership with the Department of Health (DOH), the Bangsamoro region’s Ministry of Health (MOH), and other more line agencies have then extended remedies and aid in any form.
“Your health sector has always been aware that COVID-19 pandemic response is more marathon than sprint. We are carefully pacing ourselves using the governmental whole-of-nation approach,” said IPHO Chief Dr. Alinader Minalang.
Accordingly, the government led numerous sessions of special vaccination days, capacity building for healthcare workers, deployment of more vaccination teams to hard-to-reach areas through SUYOD program, formation of more vaccination teams for mobile and temporary post-vaccination, utilization of the capacity of medical and nursing schools in vaccinating communities, promotion of Janssen vaccines in villages situated in GIDAs, and giving incentives to participants of the vaccination program.
Additionally, non-government organizations and other partners have also assisted through orientation and microplanning, augmentation of human resources, food and vehicle assistance, provision of materials for information and education campaigns, construction of provincial cold chain facilities, and helping in the data analysis and management.
Recalling the initiatives employed to attain the goal of having herd immunity, the IPHO is optimistic that even with the end of the current administration, the incoming one will continue pursuing what has been started and even improving the march to recovery, believing that this is necessary to overcome the repercussions brought about by the global health crisis.
“Our stronger response and surveillance of COVID-19 need to be sustained as we move towards a new normal… We have to increase our vaccination rate if only we want our country and province to be safer and keep us away from the bad effects or consequences of this COVID-19,” said Minalang. (CRG/PIA-10/Lanao del Sur)
As the province of Lanao del Sur continues to implement the vaccination program, Integrated Provincial Health Office (IPHO) Technical Services Chief Dr. Apasrah Macumbal-Mapupuno states that the provincial government also faces challenges that they have to counter with some necessary steps. (Michael John Paclar/PIA-10/Lanao del Sur)