DOH: COVID-19 vaccination still not mandatory | Inquirer News

DOH: COVID-19 vaccination still not mandatory

/ 07:39 AM July 08, 2022

MANILA, Philippines — COVID-19 vaccination, even the administration of booster doses, remains voluntary, the Department of Health (DOH) said Thursday.

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The health agency’s remark came after state-run Philippine News Agency published a story, saying that President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. required the first booster shot, heeding the DOH’s proposal.

“Wala pong binigay na statement ang ating gobyerno, ang kagawaran na ang atin pong pagbabakuna ay mandatory. We also did not give any statements that boosters will become mandatory. Wala po ‘yan sa ating direksyon, wala rin po ‘yan sa ating mga pronouncements,” Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said in a media forum.

(Our government and the agency have not issued any statement that vaccination is mandatory. We also did not give any statements that boosters will become mandatory. That is not in our direction and that is not in our pronouncements.)

“Ang atin pong sinasabi kailangan lang po talaga maitaas po natin ang antas ng booster doses uptake dito po sa ating bansa dahil nakikita po natin, and even our experts, are saying that our immunity for our population is already waning,” she added.

(What we are saying is we have to improve our booster doses uptake in the country because we, and even our experts, are saying that our immunity for our population is already waning.)

Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire says COVID-19 vaccination, even the administration of booster doses, remains voluntary

FILE PHOTO: DOH Undersecretary and spokesperson Maria Rosario Vergeire. INQUIRER FILES

Marcos Jr. earlier expressed support for giving anti-COVID booster shots to children as the new administration targets to impose 100 percent in-person classes by November.

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Meanwhile, Vergeire said that redefining the term “fully vaccinated” to include the first booster shot is still under review.

She also noted that Marcos Jr. was “very supportive” of the DOH during their meeting.

KGA
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