THE second phase of the pediatric A3 group’s COVID-19 vaccination began yesterday as the Department of Health (DOH), Metro Manila Center for Health Development, National Vaccine Operations Center (NVOC) and the Metro Manila local government units roll out the campaign in the entire National Capital Region.
The DOH said to mark the start of the Phase II implementation of the pediatric A3 priority group’s vaccination, a ceremonial vaccination was held at Cardinal Santos Medical Center, Ospital ng Parañaque and Quezon City General Hospital, with DOH Undersecretary Roger Tong-an and Department of the Interior and Local Government Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya attending the ceremonies.
Mayors Francis Zamora, Edwin Olivares and Joy Belmonte also attended the events in their respective local government units (LGUs).
The DOH explained that the vaccinations are currently being held in select hospitals as the expansion will be conducted in phases.
The DOH, NVOC and LGUs chose the vaccination sites or hospitals for the initial phases which have the capacity to manage possible serious adverse reactions to vaccines and facilitate easy referral of patients.
The government is implementing the pediatric A3 vaccination in a phased approach to formulate strategies on how it will be rolled out to other regions, and possibly to regular vaccination sites.
“As with the vaccination process of the adults, the vaccination for children will be closely monitored to detect adverse events following immunization to ensure the safety of our young vaccine recipients,” Tong-An said.
For Phase II, added to the eight initial list of hospitals are Caloocan City Medical Center (North and South), Ospital ng Malabon, Navotas City Hospital, Valenzuela City Emergency Hospital, Marikina Sports Complex which is near Amang Rodriguez Memorial Medical Center, Quezon City General Hospital, St. Luke’s Medical Center Quezon City, Ospital ng Maynila, Ospital ng Makati, SM Megamall Mega Vaccination Site which is near Mandaluyong City Medical Center, Cardinal Santos Medical Center, Ospital ng Muntinlupa, Ospital ng Parañaque 1, University of Perpetual Help System Dalta and Pasay City General Hospital. Meanwhile, St. Luke’s Medical Center-Global City will also cater to the Municipality of Pateros.
“Getting vaccinated against the virus, not only the adults, but also eligible children based on the Department of Health policies and guidelines will make a better environment for the kids. The lockdown has stunted their growth social-wise. They have not, since the start of the pandemic, been able to go to school through which they are taught to socialize with children and other adults. They have not been able to meet with other family members and relatives due to restrictions. They have not been getting the physical activities that the growing children should. The lockdown may have also affected their mental health,” Tong-An said.
“As such, we are urging that eligible children and adolescents be registered following your hospital’s mechanisms. As with other vaccines, make sure that the doses are completed on schedule. And most importantly, in the time of the pandemic, practice minimum public health standards to protect from getting infected and infecting others with COVID-19 and its variants,” he added.
The DOH also reminded everyone covered in the pediatric A3 group to first secure a vaccination schedule with the hospital and bring the following on the day of vaccination: medical certificate detailing the child’s comorbidity, valid IDs of both the child and the parent or guardian, and any proof of filiation like the birth certificate.
The vaccine recipient must also be accompanied by the parent or guardian at the vaccination site.