50% population protection enough to start vaxxing minors: Galvez

MANILA – A 50-percent population protection threshold is enough to start the vaccination of minors aged 12 to 17 years old, Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. said on Sunday.

Galvez, who welcomed the latest shipment of 3 million doses of government-procured Sinovac vaccines at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Pasay City, said once the “saturation point” in the inoculation drive for the priority sectors is reached, the vaccination of the younger age group can commence.

“We will present in the IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases) on how we would really look at the possibility as to when are we going to vaccinate our pre-adolescents and if we see that we get the sizeable threshold of more or less 50 percent of our population, we can start vaccinating them,” Galvez said partly in Filipino during an interview.

Galvez had proposed the vaccination of youngsters by mid-October, with minors with comorbidities and children of health care workers as among the priorities.

The government can vaccinate about 12 million minors with the arrival of 20 million doses by the first week of October, added Galvez, chief implementer of the National Task Force Against Covid-19.

The latest shipment brought the Philippines’ total vaccine stockpile to 69,699,340 doses, with 43,815,426 doses already administered nationwide. (PNA)

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