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Gov't aims to finish COVID-19 vaccination of minors by December

Gov't aims to finish COVID-19 vaccination of minors by December

MANILA, Philippines — The government is targeting to finish the vaccination of minors against COVID-19 by December this year, Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr., the chief implementor of the government’s COVID-19 response, said in the taped “Talk to the People” briefing of President Rodrigo Duterte that aired late Monday night.

Galvez underscored the need to accelerate the COVID-19 vaccination of minors.

Those getting their first dose of the vaccine will be vaccinated along with those getting their second those, he said.

“This is because NITAG [National Immunization Technical Advisory Group] and the all expert group allowed a third dose to be administered to health workers and the immunocompromised,” he added, speaking in Filipino.

The government has already started vaccinating minors aged 12 to 17 against COVID-19, although only those with comorbidities are being prioritized.

As of Monday, 9,928 minors had been vaccinated — and only 10 minor adverse reactions were recorded.

Vaccinating minors against COVID-19 is also a way to prevent them from developing mental health problems by allowing them to resume normal activities, Galvez said.

“We want to mitigate the social risk among children, parents, and the elderly. We see these young people and their mental health is suffering,” Galvez, the chief implementer of the government’s COVID-19 response, said, speaking in a mix of English and Filipino.

“We really need to give them some leeway so that they can move around to play and to study and also to socialize with their friends,” he added.

ATM

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