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The Philippine government has approved the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines to the general public, including minors, beginning October, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said on Tuesday.
“Ang good news po, inaprubahan na po ni Presidente ang pagbabakuna sa general population simula po sa buwan ng Oktubre,” Roque said.
President Rodrigo Duterte approved the recommendation of the national task force (NTF) against COVID-19 and vaccine czar, Carlito Galvez, to include the rest of the population and minors in the vaccination program as vaccine supply is stable.
Roque urged the parents of minors to register their children in the vaccination master list to ensure their slots when the distribution begins.
"Meron po tayong sapat na supply. Ang pinaghahandaan natin ‘yong master listing pa lang naman. Kapag meron na po tayong masterlist, hintayin po natin ang anunsyo kung sinong mauuna," he said.
Several local governments, including Makati City, Muntinlupa City, Caloocan City, and Mandaluyong City have begun the pre-registration of minors for COVID-19 vaccination. This is after the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the use of some coronavirus vaccines for children and adolescents aged 12 to 17.
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Currently, the Philippines follows a priority list in its vaccination drive. Among those in the top priority are medical frontliners, senior citizens, persons with comorbidities, and essential workers.
Some 44 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in the country, accounting for nearly 23.8 million Filipinos partially vaccinated and about 25.6 million fully vaccinated.