AS the Department of Health started to vaccinate teenagers aged 12 to 17 with comorbidities against Covid-19, presidential aspirant and former senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., is urging the government to ramp up the information campaign drive to assure parents that the vaccines are safe.
“The information drive that the government must undertake should explain once more that the vaccines are necessary and all vaccines being given are safe,” Marcos said, partly in Filipino.
He recalled the Dengvaxia fiasco which he believes is one of the reasons for vaccine hesitancy among parents, as many children suffered after being injected with the anti- dengue vaccine.
Due to this, Marcos said an effective information campaign must be done not only to convince the parents, but also those who remain hesitant about receiving the vaccine.
“All the vaccines have been tested and millions have received them. The numbers of those with severe side effects is so small, thus, the advantage of being vaccinated is more overwhelming,” he added.
The DOH confirmed in September that pediatric vaccination will start among 12 to 17 year olds with comorbidities, as part of Priority Group A3.
Expansion beyond this group will follow once adequate coverage of the A2 priority group or senior citizens has been achieved nationwide and vaccine supply becomes sufficient to include children.
Marcos earlier urged the local government units (LGUs) to bring the vaccines to far-flung areas and to people having a hard time accessing the vaccination centers.
For the country to reach the expected herd immunity, he also encouraged the business sector to provide incentives to employers and consumers vaccinated against Covid-19.