|Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles (Photo from Manila Bulletin)|
[Asia News Communication = Reporter Reakkana] Filipino children may be left out of the government’s initial coronavirus immunization program since the available vaccines haven’t yet been approved for their use. Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said the government would prioritize Filipinos above 16 or 18 years old in the immunization drive to attain herd immunity against the new coronavirus.
The COVID vaccines, presently available in the market, can be administered to people ages 16 and older based on the information from the manufacturers, Nograles pointed out. “We have enough funds for the (sufficient) number of Filipinos to be covered excluding (those who are) underage,” he said during a televised press briefing Tuesday.
“It was discussed last night that those 18 years old and below or 16 years old and below won’t be vaccinated because we will prioritize those above 16 or 18 for herd immunity. It really depends on the vaccine brand,” he said about the meeting with the President and Cabinet at the Palace Monday. The age restriction on the use of the COVID vaccines was cited by the Palace official to explain the reason behind the government’s decision not to buy vaccines for all Filipinos at present.