AFP open to vaccinating minors inside camps

AFP open to vaccinating minors inside camps

MANILA – Minors aged 12 to 17 years old living in communities inside military camps can get their coronavirus shots once the vaccination for them gets the green light, an official of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said Tuesday.

The government’s vaccine cluster is mulling the start of pediatric vaccination by the fourth quarter of this year, after the National Task Force Against Covid-19 (NTF) has recommended to the National Immunization Technical Advisory Group the expansion of the vaccination program to children.

“Open for the community that is already inside the camp(s),” AFP public affairs office chief Navy Capt. Jonathan Zata said in a text message to the Philippine News Agency (PNA), citing as example the barangay inside the AFP Headquarters at Camp Aguinaldo in Quezon City.

“The barangay inside CGEA (Camp General Emilio Aguinaldo) (are hosting) personnel and dependents (assigned to Camp Aguinaldo). Our CGEA Station Hospital is the one administering the vaccination inside the camp,” he said.

He said the same set-up would be done in all the other camps hosting communities nationwide.

In Quezon City, the local government is preparing the list of students in private and public schools aged 12 to 17 years old, pending the approval to include the age bracket in the expanded vaccination program.

Schools situated inside Camp Aguinaldo are the Camp General Emilio Aguinaldo High School for junior and high school students and Fort Aguinaldo Elementary School.

The NTF earlier said vaccination of the proposed age group would be highly dependent on the decision of the government’s vaccine expert panel, as well as the availability of the Covid-19 vaccines in the global market.

The Food and Drug Administration has allowed the emergency use of Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine for minors aged 12 to 15 but the Department of Health earlier said children would not get vaccinated yet due to limited supply.

The national government continues to build up the Covid-19 vaccine inventory with the steady arrival of larger shipments of government-procured and donated vaccine supplies.

As of Sept. 21, the Philippines has so far received a total of 64,942,000 vaccine doses, including the 9,586,270 doses from Sept. 13 to 19 – the highest weekly delivery since the life-saving shots from various manufacturers started arriving in February. (PNA)

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