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Phl expands Covid-19 vaccination to kids, general public



President Rodrigo Duterte has approved the vaccination of children and the general adult population against Covid-19 starting October, Malacañang announced Tuesday.

Presidential spokesperson Secretary Harry Roque said the President had expanded the state’s inoculation coverage as the country sees a steady supply of vaccines in the coming months.

“The good news is that the President has approved the vaccination of the general population starting October,” Roque announced in his regular Palace briefing. “We urge parents to list the names of their children, too, in our vaccination program.”

He said the national pandemic task force will soon release the guidelines on the general public’s vaccination.

At present, the government administers Covid-19 vaccines to five priority groups, namely: health workers, the elderly population, people with health risks, essential workers, and the poor.

Roque assured the said priority groups that the government will provide “express lanes” for them at inoculation sites once the vaccination for the general population begins.

In recent months, Philippine authorities have been reluctant in expanding the vaccination coverage for all citizens due to limited jab supply.

Around 69.62 million doses of anti-coronavirus vaccines have been shipped to the Philippines since March, and the government is expecting the arrival of up to 100,000 vaccine doses by the end of October.

The Philippines is heavily banking on vaccination against Covid-19 to get past the pandemic, which has crippled its economy and killed over 37,000 individuals.

Six months after the country rolled out its inoculation program, only 18.6 percent of its population have been fully vaccinated, which accounts for 20.5 million Filipinos.

The figure remains far from the government’s target of immunizing 50 to 70 percent of its 110 million citizens by the end of the year to achieve population protection.