Booster shots against COVID-19 to senior citizens and the immunocompromised began on Monday.
Based on the guidelines, the booster or extra dose is given at least six months after an individual completes two COVID-19 vaccine doses or more than three months after being injected with the single-dose vaccine.
The booster shot may be the same or different from the previous brand of vaccine. The vaccine recipients can choose the brand they want, but it still depends on the available supply.
Among those with immunodeficiency who can be vaccinated are people with HIV, active cancer of malignancy, those undergoing transplants, and undergoing immunosuppressive treatments, according to Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire.
According to Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, who led the proper vaccination at East Avenue Medical Center in Quezon City, other people with comorbidity or illness will be allowed to be given booster shots next week.
Duque was accompanied at the ceremonial vaccination by vaccine czar Carlito Galvez, Jr., and among those who injected was Dr. Nina Gloriani, chairperson of the government’s vaccine expert panel.
Gloriani was given the Sinovac vaccine, which was the same as her previous two shots. However, Gloriani is taking a drug that has a contraindication to another brand of vaccine.
Senior citizens, immunocompromised given booster shots
The Department of Health recommends booster users, especially the immunocompromised, to first seek advice from their doctors on what good brand of vaccine can be given to them.
Many local government units in the National Capital Region will start giving booster shots to seniors and immunocompromised on Tuesday because they only received guidelines in this regard this Sunday.
Aside from the priority groups, Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion is also pushing for a booster dose to be given to private sector employees.
According to Concepcion, many more supplies of vaccines purchased by the private sector can be used as booster shots.
Health workers have been allowed to be given booster shots since last week.
According to the latest record, more than 33.5 million individuals in the Philippines have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19.