MANILA - The Department of Health (DOH) is expected to come up with its position on the issue of COVID-19 booster jab in the Philippines within this week.
“May meeting po ang All Expert Group (AEG) natin today pinag-uusapan nga po nila ang magiging rekomendasyon lalo na doon sa mga health workers na highly vulnerable at mataas ang exposure sa COVID. Palagay ko magkakaroon ng posisyon ang Department of Health dito within the week,” said Food and Drug Administration Director General Eric Domingo.
(The All Expert Group has a meeting today to discuss its possible recommendation particularly for health workers who are highly vulnerable and has high exposure to COVID. I think the Department of Health will come up with a position within this week.)
The DOH earlier said that the AEG has yet to come up with guidelines regarding the distribution of COVID-19 boosters. The AEG assesses the safety and efficacy of COVID-19 jabs while also "guiding" the implementation of the country's immunization program, an entry from the DOH's website read.
Infectious diseases expert Dr. Rontgene Solante earlier said booster shots should already be given to health workers, most especially those who received Sinovac in March.
“Ngayon po humingi na kami ng report sa mga ospital natin kung sino yung mga fully vaccinated na nagkaka breakthrough infection lalo na yung nagkakaroon ng severe,” said Domingo.
(Now were asking hospitals to give us a report on those fully vaccinated who experienced breakthrough infection.)
He clarified that no vaccine gives 100 percent protection against COVID-19.
“Ito ang data na kino-complete natin at ito po yung pinagme-meetingan ng All Expert Group para po tingnan kung kailangan na ng booster ng mga health worker,” he said.
(This is the data that were trying to complete and the AEG will discuss the need for a booster shot for health workers.)
As of Sept. 13, over 17 million individuals in the country have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, while more than 22 million have received their first doses.