Non-disclosure of COVID-19 vaccine brand to ‘aggravate fear,’ warns Gatchalian
MANILA, Philippines — Senator Sherwin Gatchalian on Tuesday warned that not disclosing the COVID-19 vaccine brand to its recipients in advance will “aggravate fear” among the public.
Earlier, Malacañang said President Rodrigo Duterte ordered local government units (LGUs) to stop announcing in advance the vaccine brands that would be administered at jab sites.
“Personally, my analysis [is] it will not help overcoming fear. It will aggravate fear among our constituents. One of the things that helps comfort them is knowing what type of vaccine that will be injected with,” Gatchalian said in an interview over ABS-CBN News Channel.
“And a lot of constituents are doing their research. When I go around Valenzuela, I talk to our senior citizens, they even know about vaccine passports, the efficacy rate. They do their own homework and by depriving them of the brand in advance might create this notion of uncertainty and that will not help them in terms of building confidence,” he added.
The President issued the order after he saw how people crammed the vaccination sites that gave the US-made Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, according to Malacañang.
The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) said LGUs would no longer reveal in advance which brand of vaccines they would administer.
Instead, the brand of vaccines will only be disclosed to vaccine recipients on-site before inoculation. The individual can still choose not to get inoculated once informed of the vaccine brand on-site.
“[B]ut if he refuses, he will have to go back to the back of the line,” DILG Secretary Eduardo Año earlier said.
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