President Duterte signs COVID-19 Vaccination Program Act of 2021

In this picture provided by Senator Bong Go, President Rodrigo Duterte is seen signing the COVID-19 Vaccination Program Act of 2021./Photo from Senator Bong Go/via Meanne Corvera/

(Eagle News) — President Rodrigo Duterte has signed a law that will expedite the procurement of COVID-19 vaccines for the country’s vaccination program.

Under the  COVID-19 Vaccination Program Act of 2021, a P500-million indemnity fund shall also be set aside for people who will experience adverse effects following inoculation.

The law also expedites the administration of the vaccines, which were supposed to be rolled out this month.

It was signed  two days before the expected arrival of 600,000 doses of the Sinovac vaccine donated by the Chinese government.

The vaccination program is slated this year.

The government has said it was eyeing inoculation of 50 to 60 percent of the population to achieve herd immunity.

Herd immunity takes place when most of the population is immune to an infectious disease, providing indirect protection to the rest.

President Duterte has rejected recommendations to place the entire country under a modified general community quarantine, saying a vaccine rollout was first necessary.