MANILA – The government targets to launch the booster vaccination for senior citizens and immunocompromised by next week or before December 2021, vaccine czar Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. said Wednesday.
"Iba kasi ang protocol ng handling ng boosters for the health care workers at iba rin ang guidelines para sa ating mga immunocompromised, so once na nailabas na 'yon, we can start maybe even next week can start already. Ang pinaka-earliest (ay) next week at ang pinaka-latest isasama na natin siya sa National Vaccination Days (The booster dose protocols for health care workers are different than those of the immunocompromised, so once that is out we can already start maybe even next week. The earliest is next week and the latest is on the National Vaccination Days)," the official told reporters in a presser.
The National Vaccination Days are set from November 29 to December 1.
The announcement came as the country begins its booster vaccination for healthcare workers (HCWs) on November 17.
Galvez said this move is to further protect the vulnerable sectors from any possible rise in cases, especially now that infections continue to soar across Europe.
For the HCWs, Galvez is optimistic that the more than one million medical front-liners would be able to get their booster shots before the year ends.
"[K[ailangan nating tapusin ASAP dahil nakikita nating tumataas na yung (cases sa) area ng Europe and we wanted that by the time na magkaroon tayo ng tinatawag na pagtaas dito ay dapat tapos na 'yong mga health care workers (We need to finish this as soon as possible because we can see that cases are rising once again in Europe and we wanted that by the time we see an increase here, health care workers are already done with their boosters)," he said.
Galvez made an assurance that supply is enough to cover the three priority sectors for booster doses.
Based on the latest data from the National Task Force against Covid-19, the country has more than 57 million doses of vaccine available for administration.
For November alone, more than 12 million doses of Covid-19 vaccine doses are also expected to arrive in the country. (PNA)