Manila Bishop Broderick Pabillo called on the government for a more aggressive and systematic vaccination campaign as more vaccines against COVID-19 arrived in the country this week.
The prelate warned that the vaccines will be wasted if it would only expire.
The Department of Health has earlier announced that two million doses of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine provided by the COVAX Facility are expected to expire by June and July.
“Instead of being of help to the people, it might only go to waste,” said the priest.
On Thursday morning, the country received an additional 500,000 doses of Sinovac’s CoronaVac COVID-19 vaccine procured by the government.
The vaccine were delivered via a Cebu Pacific flight at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila.
The latest shipment brings the total of CoronaVac doses received by the Philippines to 5.5 million, including one million doses donated by the Chinese government.
Earlier this month, 1.5 million doses of CoronaVac procured by the government arrived in Manila. Some 3.5 million doses were also delivered in several tranches in March and April.
On Wednesday, the Philippines logged 4,700 more COVID-19 infections, raising the country’s cumulative total to over 1.159 million.
The country now has 1,159,071 confirmed coronavirus infections, of which 49,951 or 4.3 percent are considered active, said the Health department.
The day’s active cases is considered the fewest in more than two months when the country logged 47,804.
Recoveries climbed to 1,089,613 with 6,986 additional patients who have recuperated from the respiratory disease on Wednesday.
The total recoveries comprise 94 percent of the Philippines’ overall COVID-19 tally.
As of Tuesday, more than 2.5 million Filipinos received their first COVID-19 jab, while nearly 800,000 are fully-vaccinated against the disease.