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Pateros mayor to get Sinovac jab 

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Pateros Mayor Miguel Ponce III will be the first in the municipality to be vaccinated against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) to allay the fears of the public on the side effects, according to a report by Manila Bulletin.

In a Facebook video address, Ponce also encouraged residents to register for the COVID-19 vaccination and said that they have the option to choose which vaccine to use. 

“As your mayor, I will just get clearance from my doctor and once I get it, I will be the first to get vaccinated in our municipality. I will use Sinovac (vaccine) if this is available,” he said. 

China’s Sinovac Life Sciences, a subsidiary of Sinovac Biotech,  develops, manufactures, and distributes the COVID-19 vaccine CoronaVac, according to the Sinovac website.

He added, “Based on what we have heard, this was made using traditional methods. And because I have severe allergies, (Sinovac) was said to be the safest for those with severe allergies. That’s why this is what I want to use. I will show you once I get clearance from my doctor that I can be vaccinated,” Ponce said. 

He called on the public to register for the COVID-19 vaccination either through online or in their respective barangays, so that they can be included in the vaccine allocation from the national or municipal government.  

The Pateros municipal government had earlier allotted P20 million for its COVID-19 vaccination program targeting 50,000 residents.  

The vaccine rollout, he said, may start in February or March. On Feb. 9, Cabinet secretaries will visit Pateros. 

“All these (COVID-19) vaccines are safe,” he said, adding that he has faith in the vaccines that will be used in the country as these will undergo inspection by the Department of Health and the Food and Drug Administration. 

The mayor said the national government committed to cover 70 percent of the municipality’s population. 

“There will be different vaccines and you will have the option to choose from the available vaccines,” he said. 

He added that registering does not mean that COVID-19 vaccination will be mandatory or will be forced on an individual. The first group to be vaccinated in Pateros will be the medical frontliners, he said. 

Ponce said new COVID-19 cases in Pateros have risen to 17. As of Jan. 18, the local government’s last public update, Pateros had 2,038 confirmed COVID-19 cases, including 2,001 recoveries, 34 deaths, and three active cases. 

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