Article by: Gilbert Comprado
Photos by: Edmar James Pariolan
© Collegiate Marian Voice
“Ligtas. Lakas. Buong Pinas!”
With that theme, the “Bayanihan, Bakunahan National COVID-19 Vaccinations Days” landed along SMCTI grounds as part of the school’s participation in the three-day nationwide vaccination drive on November 29-30 and December 1, 2021.
Unvaccinated individuals, 12 years old and above, were accommodated inside Mother Ignacia Multi-Purpose Gymnasium and waited for their turns to get the COVID-19 vaccine shots from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM.
Mary Grace M. Estortuno, DOH Representative, encouraged people to participate in the activity by being vaccinated and said the general goal of the campaign is to end the COVID-19 pandemic.
The school event sought to administer at least 1,000 vaccine doses per day while the whole campaign targets DOH’s goal of vaccinating at least 70% of the country’s total population.
As for Estortuno’s assessment, the three-day campaign inside SMCTI went well especially with the help of the local government and the volunteers from the school.
For Renato L. Quemaño, one of the faculty volunteers, the event is successful in a way that the approach is modified and innovative in convincing the people to be vaccinated. As a volunteer, the activity also allowed him to do part of his social responsibility as a Filipino.
“Based on my first and last day observation on the operation of the National Vaccination Days, I think it was fulfilling on my part to be part of this endeavor of our National Government and be part of the history,” Quemaño added.
Aside from 12 faculty members, students from Nursing Department also volunteered to assist in the event.
Ken Ronan B. Magsalay, a nursing student volunteer, said that aside from service to the community, the National Vaccination Days allowed them to refresh all their knowledge and skills. He said that the campaign is related to their Community Health Nursing subjects that they were supposed to take on their second and fourth year but was halted by the pandemic.
“It’s really a great opportunity for us because as student nurses as we are, at the same time as Marian students as we are, we know that in nursing, it’s not just about learning in four corners in our room but also we are skill-based, we are also graded with our knowledge, skills, and attitude,” Magsalay said.
SMCTI School Nurse Korina R. Tasic on the possibility of face-to-face classes after the campaign said that it is not yet fastened but they will first target CHED’s requirements of at least 80 percent of personnel and student population to be vaccinated.
“If we will reach 80 percent, there is a high possibility that we will have a limited face-to-face maybe by next school year,” she remarked.
As of November 18, 2021, the country has yet to administer about 53 million out of the total 123,258,340 doses of received and procured COVID-19 vaccines from February 28 to November 14 of the same year hence, the declaration of the vaccination days under Proclamation No. 1253.
The campaign aims to tap the Bayanihan spirit among Filipinos to ramp up the vaccination rate by engaging in the government’s intensified vaccination program against COVID 19.