MANILA (UPDATE) - Sinovac and Pfizer-BioNTech led the list of preferred COVID-19 vaccines while majority of Filipinos overall prefer the US as their source of jabs, according to an independent Social Weather Stations survey released Monday.
Of 1,200 adult Filipinos, some 39 percent chose China's Sinovac Biotech. It was followed by Pfizer-BioNTech (32 percent), Oxford-AstraZeneca (22 percent) and Johnson & Johnson (10 percent).
Moderna got 7 percent, CureVac with 3 percent, Sinopharm (3 percent), Novavax (3 percent), Sanofi-GSK (3 percent), and Gamaleya (2 percent). Two percent chose all 10 brands, while 19 percent did not give an answer.
Sinovac Biotech was most popular in Mindanao and the Visayas at 44 percent each. The Chinese vaccine and Pfizer are equally preferred in Metro Manila at 37 percent each, followed by Balance Luzon at 36 percent and 33 percent, respectively.
The survey also found that Pfizer-BioNTech (43 percent) and Sinovac Biotech (41 percent) are equally chosen by respondents who answered that they prefer the US as their source of COVID vaccine.
Seventy-six percent who chose China as their preferred source also picked Sinovac Biotech as their preferred vaccine while Oxford-AstraZeneca was most popular among those who chose the United Kingdom, SWS said.
The Chinese vaccine topped the list among junior high school graduates (43 percent), elementary graduates (34 percent), and non-elementary graduates (36 percent).
Pfizer-BioNTech, meantime, was most popular among college graduates (46 percent), compared to junior high school graduates (36percent), elementary graduates (26 percent), and non-elementary graduates (21 percent).
US AS MOST PREFERRED SOURCE OF VACCINES
Some 63 percent chose the US as their preferred source of COVID-19 vaccines. It was followed by China (19 percent), Japan (13 percent), Australia (13 percent), United Kingdom (13 percent), Canada (12 percent), and Russia (12 percent).
Some 8 percent chose Germany, followed by South Korea (6 percent), and India (3 percent). Two percent chose all 10 countries, while 12 percent did not give an answer.
The study found that the US is the most preferred source of jabs all areas. It was most popular in Visayas (66 percent), followed by Balance Luzon (65 percent), Metro Manila (63 percent), and Mindanao (54 percent.)
Preference for US vaccines was highest among college graduates (67 percent), followed by junior high school graduates (66 percent), elementary graduates (58 percent), and non-elementary graduates (55 percent).
The survey was conducted April 28 to May 2, 2021 using face-to-face interviews of 1,200 adults. It has sampling error margin of ±3% for national percentages.
The national government earlier urged local authorities not to announce available vaccine brands after crowds trooped to inoculation sites without pre-registering.
Experts had warned that withholding the announcement of brands may however increase vaccine hesitancy among the public.
The Philippines aims to inoculate up to 70 million of its population by year-end to achieve herd immunity, vaccine czar Secretary Carlito Galvez said.
Government needs to conduct 500,000 daily inoculations in Metro Manila and 8 other economic hubs to achieve its target by November, he said.
The country has administered 4,097,425 COVID-19 vaccine doses as of Saturday. Some 949,939 Filipinos have been fully vaccinated while 3,147,486 have received their first dose.
For an infectious disease expert, the country's COVID-19 vaccination rollout is addressing vaccine hesitancy among Filipinos.
"We saw that many also preferred Sinovac and I think this is a proof that majority of those vaccinated with Sinovac got their first-hand experience of minimal adverse reaction," he told Teleradyo in a mix of Filipino and English.
Getting COVID-19 vaccines dispel myths and misinformation surrounding the jabs, he added.
"People should not refuse in taking it because what we are after here is the vaccine that will really save your life, not just getting the infection," added Solante, chief of the Adult Infectious Diseases and Tropical Medicine unit at the San Lazaro Hospital.
As of May 24, the country has administered over 4.3 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine, of which more than 3.3 million people received their first dose. Some 986,000 were fully vaccinated.