Manila - The government conducted a simulation exercise on delivering the vaccines from NAIA airport to the different coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccination centers. This is in preparation for the first batch of COVID-19 vaccines that are expected to arrive this February.
According to Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, they planned the execution to take at least 30 minutes to unload the vaccines from the airport, get the clearance from the Bureau of Customs, and place the vaccines unto the refrigerated trucks. Surprisingly they completed the execution in just 16 minutes.
Vaccine Czar Carlito Galvez Jr. says the Customs had already prepared a one-stop-shop for the clearance of the vaccines and the ancillary supplies. These are the paraphernalia needed for the vaccinations, like injections and needles.
It took 25 minutes for the truck to travel from the NAIA to the Skyway up to the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) that serves as the government centralized vaccine hub. It was five minutes longer than the target of 20 minutes.
After another five minutes, the vaccines are then lowered to the cold storage facility of the RITM. Here the vaccines are inspected to see if it's all complete and has retained the temperature needed through-out the travel period.
They have also prepared a simulation of the distribution of vaccines to different COVID-19 referral hospitals in Metro Manila. Namely, Philippine General Hospital, Lung Center of the Philippines in Quezon City, and Dr. Jose Rogriguez Hospital in Caloocan City.
Health workers in the aforementioned hospitals will be given priority for the first batch of the Pfizer Vaccines that are expected to arrive this February.
Another simulation was scheduled this Tuesday at 3 o'clock for the delivery of vaccines to the Tala Hospital in Caloocan. Here, they will perfect the handling of the Pfizer vaccines, especially in taking care of the cold-chain and the scheduling of preparing the vaccines from the moment it is taken out of the freezer to the actual vaccinations process.
The hospital's ultra-low freezer must be below 18 degrees Celsius. The vaccination program for its employees will be held at the outpatient department of the Tala Hospital.
Furthermore, additional vaccines will be delivered to the Philippines Airlines Caro Terminal for Cebu City.