3,416 get Covid shots in initial vaccination rollout for minors


The Department of Health (DOH) reported on Wednesday that a total of 3,416 minors aged 15 to 17 were already inoculated as of October 19, following the rollout of the Covid-19 pediatric vaccination in the National Capital Region (NCR) last week.

Aside from the previous eight participating hospitals, which include the Philippine Children’s Medical Center, National Children’s Hospital, Philippine Heart Center, Pasig City Children’s Hospital, Fe Del Mundo Medical Center, Philippine General Hospital, St. Luke’s Hospital-Global City, and the Makati Medical Center, DOH said that there will be additional hospitals/sites that will be participating in the Phase 2 of the Pediatric A3 vaccination drive.

DOH said that children with following comorbidities are eligible for vaccination: 1) medical complexity (i.e. those with long- term dependence on technical support); 2) genetic conditions; 3) neurologic conditions; 4) metabolic/endocrine diseases; 5) cardiovascular diseases; 6) obesity; 7) HIV infection; 8) tuberculosis; 9) chronic respiratory diseases; 10) renal disorders; 11) hepatobiliary diseases; and 12) immunocompromised due to disease or treatment.

As part of the wider coverage of the Covid-19 vaccination rollout in the country, children in this age group with comorbidities are scheduled to receive the vaccines with the Food and Drug Administration’s Emergency Use Authorization, namely, Pfizer and Moderna.

The initial run of the vaccination will also be conducted in hospitals where children will be screened and monitored by doctors, and facilitating referrals will be easier in case of serious adverse events following immunization. It will also be conducted in a phased approach, wherein part of the expansion plan is implementing it in regions where there is more than 50 percent coverage for Priority Group A2.

While the pilot implementation of pediatric vaccination has started, the DOH continuously encourages the adult population, especially senior citizens, to get vaccinated as soon as the vaccines are available in their area.

Likewise, the DOH urged everyone, even the fully-vaccinated, to continue practicing minimum public health standards to protect from getting infected and infecting others with Covid-19.

“The DOH and the Covid-19 NVOC [National Vaccination Operation Center] have likewise conducted several town hall meetings with concerned stakeholders like hospital chiefs and directors, vaccination teams, and even parents to cascade the operational guidelines and other pertinent preparations that the DOH and implementing sites are undertaking for the pilot rollout,” DOH said.

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