By Bernadette E. Tamayo | The Manila Times
FORMER Sen. Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. urged the public to get vaccinated against Covid-19 to protect themselves and ease pressure on hospitals that are full.
He made the appeal on Tuesday as the occupancy rate in intensive care units (ICUs) and ward beds remained under the high-risk category.
Marcos noted that hospitals are in danger of getting overwhelmed with the high occupancy rate and severe and critical patients still lining up for admission.
"If our hospitals and their staff got overwhelmed [with many Covid patients], our healthcare systems might collapse," he said.
As of Sept. 13, he said the Department of Health reported that 74 percent of Covid-19 intensive care unit beds across the country were utilized, while 78 percent of the total ICU beds in the National Capital Region were occupied.
Meanwhile, 74 percent of the ward beds nationwide were also utilized, while 72 percent in the NCR were occupied. An occupancy rate is considered high-risk if it is over 70 percent but less than 85 percent, according to health authorities.
Marcos advised the public to immediately avail of the vaccination program to minimize their chances of getting hospitalized.
He said global and local data show that the benefits of getting vaccinated and the protection from Covid-19 hospitalization and death far outweigh the risks for the adverse events reported.
Marcos, who himself got infected with the virus in 2020, pointed out that data gathered by the Food and Drug Administration showed that of some 13.8 million fully vaccinated individuals, only 0.0017 percent got Covid-19 as of Aug. 29.
"Magpabakuna ka (get vaccinated) if you don't want to end up in a hospital bed," he said.
"Mas mahirap kung lumalala ang lagay mo dahil (it is more difficult if your condition worsens because) you have to wait for hours or even days before getting admitted," Marcos stressed.
"International and local health experts said that although you can still contract [Covid-19] even if you're already vaccinated, vaccines effectively reduce hospitalizations and even death because you would not develop severe case of Covid," he added.