DOH chief: COVID-19 bivalent vaccine now available for general population | Inquirer News

DOH chief: COVID-19 bivalent vaccine now available for general population

/ 09:49 AM August 04, 2023

DOH chief says the general public can now avail of the COVID-19 bivalent vaccine FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines — The general population could now get the COVID-19 bivalent vaccine, Department of Health (DOH) Secretary Ted Herbosa said Friday.

According to Herbosa, the DOH’s executive committee (Execom) decided to make the COVID-19 bivalent vaccine available to the public due to the slow consumption of initial doses of bivalent vaccine, which targets specific variants of COVID-19 like the more transmissible Omicron.


He also admitted that the vaccine’s supply is declining as the shots are nearing its “extended shelf life” expiration.

READ: DOH to ‘extend shelf life’ of COVID jabs near expiry

“Bago ito, last week lang namin dinecide ito sa Execom kasi nga mabagal ang uptake,” Herbosa said in an interview over radio DWPM.

(This is new; we decided on it at the Execom last week because the uptake is slow.)

“Dati healthcare worker at senior citizen, so nag-decide kami, sige lahat na ng gusto magpa-vaccine ng booster, pwede na,” he also said.

(It used to be just the healthcare workers and senior citizens, so we decided to let everyone who wants to get a booster vaccine go ahead.)


READ: Bivalent vaccines’ timely protection

This means the general population could avail of the COVID-19 bivalent vaccine, Herbosa added when asked further.

“Oo, ako ang tingin ko, basta available ibibigay namin kasi paubos na, pa-expire na siya eh.”

(Yes, I think so, as long as it’s available, we’ll give it because the supply is going down, it’s about to expire.)

The COVID-19 bivalent vaccine was donated by Lithuania in June and considered expired on July 31, but Herbosa asserted that the manufacturer extended its shelf life until August 31.

Herbosa said those who received their primary vaccines with one booster shot could use the COVID-19 bivalent vaccine.

The DOH chief also said that only 38 percent of the more than 390,000 doses of COVID-19 bivalent vaccine were utilized as of July.


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For more news about the novel coronavirus click here.
What you need to know about Coronavirus.
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TAGS: bivalent COVID-19 vaccines, COVID-19, DoH, vaccine

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