Politics

PHL to hold special COVID vaccination drive for kids as fully vaccinated Filipinos reach 73M

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PHILIPPINE STAR/ MICHAEL VARCAS

MORE than 73 million Filipinos are now fully vaccinated against coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), the Department of Health (DoH) said on Thursday.  

Of the total number of fully vaccinated people, 6.9 million were seniors and more than 10 million were adolescents, Health officer-in-charge Maria Rosario S. Vergeire told a news briefing on Tuesday.  

More than 5.3 million children have also been fully vaccinated, she added.  

Ms. Vergeire said nearly 20.9 million people have received their first booster dose and more than 3.5 million have received their second booster dose.  

In January this year, officials of the previous administration said the government was expecting to have 90 million fully vaccinated individuals by end-June.   

The Health Official, meanwhile, said a three-day COVID-19 vaccination drive will again be held this December to increase the vaccination rate among Filipino children.  

The drive would prioritize kids aged five to 11 and those who have yet to receive their first booster shot, she added.  

The country has wasted more than 31 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines, amounting to P15.6 billion, Ms. Vergeire said on Monday.  

Almost 70% of the wasted vaccines were procured by the private sector and local governments, she said. Short life spans and temperature excursions were among the causes of vaccine wastage, she noted.  

The country posted 8,004 coronavirus infections in the past week, with a daily average of 1,143 cases, the DoH said in a bulletin on Monday. — Kyle Aristophere T. Atienza