Behind the continuous COVID-19 vaccination program in the country is a complex and concerted effort of hardworking individuals, groups and organizations.
The Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) and the Department of Health (DOH) have released a documentary detailing the journey of COVID-19 vaccines from arrival, storage, packaging and distribution to various areas of the country.
Entitled, “Ang Pamana: Bakuna ng Pag-asa,” the documentary provides a closer look into the efforts and sacrifices of government workers in implementing the national COVID-19 vaccination program.
The government said the vaccination program presents a huge challenge as the country is divided into many islands.
“Kung titingnan natin parang madali na ideploy iyong vaccines sa different areas. Isang challenge iyon,” vaccine czar Carlito Galvez said.
The government has implemented a strategy to avoid any delay and make the vaccine rollout more efficient, from the arrival, storage and distribution.
When it comes to arrival and transport of vaccines to the cold-storage facility, the national government has tapped various agencies such as the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA), Philippine National Police (PNP), Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and the Bureau of Customs (BuCor).
The vaccines would then be received by PharmaServ Express’ cold-chain facility in Marikina, the national government’s cold-chain and logistics partner.
The Filipino cold-chain facility has enough capability to store millions of doses of various COVID-19 vaccine brands that require different temperatures at any given time.
Before storing the vaccines, the Department of Health (DOH) thoroughly checks the vaccines, including lot number and expiry dates. After that, the vaccines will be packaged before distribution to various parts of the country.
The DOH said PharmaServ Express conducts strict inspection of the vaccine packages, such as quantity and documentation, before they are dispatched to different areas by drivers such as Kevin Samson, a company driver.
“Dati ordinaryong equipment lang po iyong dala ko. Ngayon mas malaki ang responsibilidad ko kasi hawak ko ang buhay ng bawat Pilipino. Ang pag-asa ng bakuna,” said Samson.
PharmaServ Express is the only company in the country that uses a biothermal case system that maintains the required temperature of the vaccines while being transported to various areas of the country.
Thanks to the biothermal case system, the national government has recorded no vaccine wastage since the start of the vaccination program last year.
Aside from its biothermal case system, PharmaServ Express has more than sufficient manpower and ground assets to transport the vaccines throughout the Philippines via land, sea and air and deliver them in a timely manner.
The vaccines will then be delivered to regional offices, provincial offices up to the municipal levels of the DOH, which will oversee the distribution to different areas for the inoculation of citizens.
When you get your booster shot in the coming days, or as you accompany your children for their COVID-19 vaccine, also think of the many people who made it all possible.
Check out the video on how the vaccine storage and transfer happen: