By Christina Erbon 

President Ferdinand Bongbong Marcos Jr has vowed that there would be no more COVID-19 lockdowns and promised the establishment of vaccine centers as the country faces yet another gradual surge of COVID-19 cases in the recent weeks. 

Photo Courtesy by Michael Vars (The Philippine Star) / GMA News

"Sa ating sitwasyon na pangkalusugan, nariyan pa rin ang banta ng COVID-19 lalo't may mga nadidiskubreng variant ng coronavirus, pero hindi na natin kakayanin ang isa pang lockdown," Marcos said during his first State of the Nation Address (SONA).

The president added that the country would not be able to survive another lockdown, emphasizing the importance of properly balancing the health and welfare of the citizens on one hand, and the country's economy on the other. 

Marcos has also pledged to increase the number of hospitals, clinics, and regional health units while highlighting the need to improve the country’s healthcare system.

"The need for a stronger healthcare system is self-evident. We must bring medical service to the people and not wait for them to come to the hospital and healthcare centers," he said.

Arguing that it is time for students to attend in fullface-to-face classes, Marcos has also announced his intention to step up the vaccination program and the administration of booster doses across the country.

While ensuring the safety of students for the resumption of classes, the president pronounced that he has ordered the Department of Health (DOH) and Department of  Interior and Local Government (DILG) to "undertake another rollout of booster vaccinations."

Moreover, he reasoned that if the booster doses were administered to more people, the COVID-19 Alert Level Syste that will be used for the time being could be modified.

Before the president’s SONA, the DOH has already vowedn to administer 23 million COVID-19 booster shots within the first 100 days of the his term.

Edited by Khezyll Galvan