Pfizer, 3 others OK as booster for Sinopharm recipients, experts say

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 27 2022 12:10 AM | Updated as of Jan 27 2022 12:38 AM

MANILA—The Department of Health has received advice from a vaccine expert panel recommending AstraZeneca, Moderna, Pfizer and Sinovac as booster for Sinopharm vaccine recipients.

Panel member Dr. Rontgene Solante made the confirmation Wednesday.

"Any booster na binibigay doon sa Sinovac can also be given sa Sinopharm. It can also be Pfizer, Moderna, Astrazeneca,” said Solante.

Filipinos who were inoculated with Sinopharm's COVID-19 vaccine had been told to wait for the advice of experts before getting boosted.

President Rodrigo Duterte was vaccinated with the Sinopharm jab. He has received a booster shot from the same brand, his acting spokesman Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said earlier this month. 

Solante said fully vaccinated individuals must get their booster shots as soon as possible so the country can achieve a "wall of immunity".

“Population protection is we are protecting a particular population that will not develop severe infection while waiting for the vaccine. That was the target,” he said.

“We have shifted already. Because the supply of the vaccine is also not a problem at this point in time. This is mainly driven by the fact that with the variant that is highly transmissible and heavily mutated, we just can’t afford to vaccinate a percentage of the population.”

Solante called on parents to get children who are qualified for vaccination inoculated. 

Meanwhile, Dr. Mary Ann Bunyi of the National Immunization Technical Advisory Group said more than 6.2 million children aged 12 to 17 years old are fully vaccinated while 7.6 million have received at least one dose.

She called on parents of 5 to 11-year-old kids to get them ready for inoculation once it is available for the age bracket in the country.

“Ang mga bakunang binibigay ng ating pamahalaan ay nagdaan ng masusing pagaaral. So hindi naman magbibigay ang pamahalaan ng isang bakuna na hindi ligtas at mabisa para sa mga batang ito,” she said.

“Direct benefit will be to prevent SARS-COV 2 infection and that includes protecting the child against severities, hospitalization and getting severe or long-term complication like MIS-C,” she added.

— Report from Vivienne Gulla, ABS-CBN News

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