No COVID-19 vaccination in hospitals for minors–Rama
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The distribution of COVID-19 vaccines to minors aged 12 to 17 years old will most likely be in a traditional vaccination site near hospitals and not inside a hospital.
This was the pronouncement of Cebu City Acting Mayor Michael Rama over the upcoming vaccination of adolescents with selected brands of COVID-19 vaccines such as Pfizer and Moderna.
“I am not quite comfortable bringing our children to the hospitals for vaccination when the COVID cases are still not yet zero,” he said.
Rama said that the hospitals are still scary even for adults because of the high transmission risk of COVID-19 in these facilities. He said this is the last place he wants the children to be in.
Unless the COVID-19 cases have been significantly reduced and hospitals are no longer risky places, Rama said the city will keep minors away from medical facilities hosting COVID-19 patients as much as possible.
Instead, the city government will be looking into existing vaccination sites nearest to hospitals so that whatever happens, minors can be rushed to the hospital if they should suffer adverse effects of the vaccines.
The city government notes that adverse effects are unlikely as the two vaccine brands, Moderna and Pfizer, have been given authorization to be used for adolescents.
These sites include Ayala Center Cebu, University of Cebu J. Alcantara Campus, and Southwestern Univerity.
The City Health Department (CHD) has noted a rapid response of the parents of guardians of children over the vaccination registration.
As of October 13, 2021, at least 4,631 minors have been registered by their parents or guardians in PaBakunata.com just within three days of launch of the online portal.
Doctor Jeffrey Ibones, the officer-in-charge of the CHD, said that this response has been overwhelming and shows the trust and support of the public with the COVID-19 vaccines.
“Nalipay ta nga daghan na gyod niregister. Naghope ta nga iparegister na gyod sa ilang mga ginikanan ilang mga anak aron masegurado gyod nga mabakunahan sila,” said Ibones.
The challenge now is to convince parents who refused to get vaccinated as they are most likely to refuse vaccination for their children as well.
Ibones hopes and appeals to these parents to choose safety for themselves and their children. He said that the vaccines may not cure COVID-19, but it will prevent severe effects of the virus.
So far, the city has inoculated 376,505 first dose vaccines and 322,063 second dose vaccines. A total of 748,092 individuals have registered for the program as well.
The CHD hopes to achieve herd immunity by the end of the year with the continuous supply of vaccines coming into the city. /bmjo
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