As part of its target to vaccinate 1.7 million individuals, the Quezon City government specifically allotted its first Johnson and Johnson’s Janssen vaccine supply to the senior citizens of District 2 in a one-day rollout in the district.
Out of the six districts, District 2 is the most densely populated, composed of five barangays with a population of 738,000, according to the latest data of the Philippine Statistics Authority.
Mayor Joy Belmonte explained that District 2’s senior citizens must be prioritized given the threat of the Delta variant and the relatively higher numbers of COVID-19 patients in the district.
“District 2 has the most number of underprivileged communities, which makes them the most vulnerable to the transmission of the virus and the least able to afford hospital care. The decision to focus this vaccine supply on District 2 is based on sound evidence, including the number of cases per hundred thousand, number of deaths, and other factors like minimal health seeking behavior, affecting the senior citizens in the area,” Mayor Belmonte said.
According to the report of the Quezon City Epidemiology and Disease Surveillance Unit (CESU), District 2 has 13,834 out of the 106,137 total cases in the city as of July 26, 2021. The number of cases in District 2 has increased by 21% over the past 14-day period.
For the week of July 13-26, the attack rates per 10,000 individuals in 2 barangays in District 2 continue to increase from the previous week: Batasan Hills from 3.08 to 3.43 and Bagong Silangan from 1.51 to 2.12. Meanwhile, in three barangays, a decrease has been observed, namely in Commonwealth, from 1.81 to 1.33; Payatas from 1.55 to 1.34; and Holy Spirit from 2.5 to 1.84.
CESU Head Dr. Rolly Cruz also said that District 2 has the highest case fatality rate among all the districts in the city. Out of the 217 individuals who have died in the district, 113 or 52% of deaths are aged 60 and above.
“Considering the population and the current case count in District 2, virus transmission is highly probable especially with the threat of the Delta variant. A single case can lead to multiple cases due to the fact that there are many vulnerable individuals, and quarantine protocols are hard to implement because the houses are clustered,” Dr. Cruz said.
Joseph Juico, co-chair of Task Force Vax to Normal said that the limited 19,000 J&J vaccines can considerably increase population protection in District 2.
“These one-dose vaccines will immediately provide protection to a number of senior citizens. The single dose vaccine means they will be fully protected right away and will greatly increase the total number of senior citizens who are safe in Quezon City,” Juico said.
Under its QCProtektodo Vaccination Program, the city government also launched ProtekLolo, ProtekLola sa QCProtektodo, aimed at vaccinating a total of 300,000 senior citizens.
After the special rollout, the city government will continue vaccinating senior citizens in other districts with an overall target of 75,000 additional inoculated seniors by Saturday afternoon.
Meanwhile, the vaccination program is at full speed, with other vaccine brands being used to inoculate members of the A1-A5 priority groups.
Mayor Belmonte assures QCitizens that the national government has committed a regular vaccine supply to the city, even as QC awaits its own procured 1.1million doses of AstraZeneca vaccines.
Senior citizens are encouraged to register at the qceservices.quezoncity.gov.ph/qcvaxeasy to be part of the special vaccination rollout.