Vaccine hesitancy high among the poor – Galvez
MANILA, Philippines — Many residents of poor communities are hesitant to get vaccinated against COVID-19, Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr., the country’s vaccine manager, said during a taped briefing with President Rodrigo Duterte that aired Wednesday night.
Galvez said about 40% in the D and E classes refuse to get immunized against the severe respiratory disease.
Those in classes A, B, and C were observed to have a higher “uptake” on COVID-19 vaccines.
“Our major challenge are those in groups D and E,” Galvez said, speaking partly in Filipino. “[Those in] the A, B, C groups have a high uptake. But those in barangays in the innermost, congested areas, that’s where we’re finding difficulty. More or less 40 percent apparently don’t want to be vaccinated.”.
The government has so far been inoculating health workers, senior citizens, persons with comorbidities, and it will soon open vaccination to essential workers and indigents.
According to Galvez, about 90% of health workers nationwide have been vaccinated, but hesitancy remains high among barangay health workers.
He said the government would urge the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) and local government units to further make efforts in ramping up vaccine confidence in their localities.
Meanwhile, only 11% of the target population of senior citizens have so far been vaccinated.
“We should be able to encourage our senior citizens and people with comorbidities to have themselves vaccinated,” Galvez said.
So far, the Philippines has administered 4.4 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines, with over one million individuals having received two doses.
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