The Department of Health in Eastern Visayas (DOH-8) on Thursday said it will extend the National Vaccination Days (NVD) until Dec. 3, granting the requests of some local governments units (LGUs) in the region.

“It is the local government’s discretion if they would extend or not,” the DOH statement said, indicating the extension is not mandatory.

“Please note that even without the extension, our vaccination activities continue until all of our targets get vaccinated,” it added.

Some 421,2220 residents in Eastern Visayas received Covid-19 shots during the three-day NVD from November 29 to December 1, the DOH-8 reported.

Although the figure only represents 53 percent of the target, DOH-8 information officer Jelyn Lopez-Malibago said the massive inoculation drive was considered successful.

“We are glad that we achieved that number considering the challenges like accessibility and vaccine hesitancy in some areas,” Malibago said in a message sent to reporters.

Earlier, the DOH-8 eyed to provide Covid-19 vaccines to 789,813 individuals during the aggressive vaccination drive in the region.

Since the start of the regular vaccination rollout on Mar. 5, 2021, health workers have administered vaccines to 2.19 million residents in Region 8 out of the 3.36 million target population.

About 37.5 percent of the target are fully vaccinated while 65.2 percent have received the first dose.

The region has six provinces, 136 municipalities, and seven cities. (PNA)