Half of senior citizens must be vaxxed before minors

THE vaccination of minors 12 to 17 years old in Central Visayas will proceed only after half of the senior citizen population in the region is inoculated, the Visayas Vaccination Operations Center (VVOC) said Friday, Oct. 15, 2021.

As of Oct. 14, only 37.7 percent, or 224,097 senior citizens, in Central Visayas have been fully vaccinated against coronavirus disease (Covid-19).

There are 595,058 senior citizens in the region.

In Metro Cebu, 44.01 percent of the senior citizens have been vaccinated.

“We lag behind other regions. We have to help each other,” said Dr. Mary Jean Loreche, VVOC spokesperson.

She said the vaccination of minors will be undertaken in four phases.

The first phase, which involves minors with comorbidities, kicked off Friday in eight hospitals in Metro Manila.

As of 4 p.m. Friday, 1,031 minors with comorbidities were given the vaccine.

The minors with comorbidities are now part of priority group A3 (persons with comorbidities) and are classified as pediatric A3.

Pediatric vaccinations will be expanded initially to regions that have vaccinated 50 percent of their senior citizens.

Under the guidelines, the minor and his or her parent or guardian must present a medical certificate, proof of affiliation such as birth certificate, and valid ID of the guardian or parent.

The guardian will also have to sign a document certifying that the vaccination is with consent and that he or she understands the vaccine that the child will receive.

Loreche emphasized that the child has the right to say “NO.”

She said the child must be made to understand the purpose of the vaccine, and why he or she needs to get the vaccine.

A child who cries and refuses to get vaccinated will be advised to go home.

As of Oct. 14, the VVOC reported that Metro Cebu has administered a total of 2,237,903 doses, of which 1,189,538 were given as first dose and 1,048,365 were administered as second dose.

As of Oct. 10, the VVOC said Cebu still had 1,115,196 doses of vaccines available.

These vaccines are Sinovac, AstraZeneca, Pfizer, Moderna, Sinopharm and Sputnik V for the second dose. (KFD)