Court asked to stop COVID-19 vaccination of children aged 5 to 11 | Inquirer News

Court asked to stop COVID-19 vaccination of children aged 5 to 11

/ 03:47 PM February 03, 2022
QC court asked to stop kids vaccination

A minor is getting her shot against COVID-19 during the pediatric vaccination organized by the Department of Health and the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority at a mall inside the Subic Bay Freeport. (Photo courtesy of SBMA).

Update

MANILA, Philippines — A petition has been filed before the Quezon City Regional Trial Court to stop the Department of Health (DOH) from vaccinating children aged 5 to 11 against COVID-19.

The petitioners are parents whose children are within the 5 to 11 bracket are represented by the Public Attorneys’ Office (PAO).

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However, the DOH is determined to continue the vaccination program as planned for this age group.

READ: DOH to push through with pediatric vaccination despite court petition

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In the petition, the parents urge the court to uphold “their right to consent (and necessarily, right to refuse consent to COVID-19 vaccination) in behalf of their children; and ultimately, protect life and health of the latter and other children similarly threatened of exposure to undue risks to their life and health.”

The country will begin the vaccination of 5 to 11-year-old children on February 4. It will be rolled out in six vaccination sites—Philippine Heart Center, Philippine Children’s Medical Center, National Children’s Hospital, Manila Zoo, SM North Edsa (Skydome), and Fil Oil Gym (San Juan City)

READ: COVID-19 vaccination for children aged 5-11 to be held in 6 sites

The children will be receiving a reformulated Pfizer vaccine that the government has given an emergency use authorization.

The petition stated that the parents are concerned that they will be deprived of their right to decide on matters affecting their children citing a Department of Health (DOH) memorandum which states that: “in case the parent/guardian refuses to give consent to the vaccination despite the desire and willingness of the minor child to have himself/herself vaccinated, or there are no persons that may legally exercise parental authority over the child, the State may act as parens patriae and give the necessary consent.”

The petition pointed out that with the DOH memorandum, the government is “indirectly forcing” children to get vaccinated even though Republic Act 11525 states that the COVID-19 vaccines are experimental.

The Health department acknowledged the parents’ petition to prohibit vaccination against COVID-19 for children aged 5 to 11, but maintained it would remain on its immunization schedule for everyone’s safety.

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“We recognize their right to file a case, and we will wait for the legal process to take its course,” said the DOH in a statement.

“However, as far as the national government is concerned, we remain steadfast in our commitment to protect all sectors of society, including children and other vulnerable groups. As such, we will proceed with the vaccination rollout for the said age group as planned,” it added.

RELATED STORIES:

Kids aged 5 to 11 can start getting Pfizer shots on Feb. 4

14 millions students aged 5-11 can get COVID-19 vaccination

PAO chief appeals to LGUs: Don’t discriminate the unvaccinated

/MUF/abc

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TAGS: 5 to 11, COVID-19, PAO, Persida Rueda-Acosta, Pfizer, Vaccination
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