City starts rollout of Bivalent booster vaccines vs COVID-19
Gaane encourages priority groups to get booster shot. The city’s residents can now have their Bivalent booster dose as the City Health Office launched the booster vaccination campaign against COVID-19.
This was pronounced by Councilor Maria Lourdes S. Gaane, chair of the City Council Committee on Health, Nutrition, and Health Insurance, during the 44th regular session of the 20th City Council, presided over by Presiding Officer Pro Tempore Councilor Romeo V. Calizo.
In her special report, Councilor Gaane informed the legislative body that the city received an initial 3,000 doses of bivalent vaccine boosters from the Department of Health as part of a large donation from the Lithuanian government. The government of Lithuania donated 391,860 doses of Comirnaty Pfizer-BioNTech-adapted bivalent vaccines to the Philippines through the World Health Organization, The Gavel learned.
Councilor Gaane said that the initial targets of this vaccination campaign are the A1 and A2 priority groups. These are the frontliners, senior citizens, and people with underlying medical conditions, who already received their second booster doses at least four months ago.
“I know that some people are still hesitant to get vaccinated they may have concerns about the safety of the vaccine or about the side effects. However, both science and experience have proven that the bivalent vaccine is safe and effective,” she opined.
In response to Councilor James Judith II, Councilor Gaane clarified that the booster doses given by the DOH are only initial vaccines that would cover priority groups since these vaccines should be preserved at a specific temperature.
Councilor Gaane reported that Bivalent boosters have undergone reformulation to effectively target both the original strain of COVID-19 and the highly contagious omicron virus. It proves 70 percent effective at preventing symptomatic COVID-19 infection and severe illness.
“This vaccine is not a magic pill. But it can help to protect against severe illness, hospitalization, and death from COVID-19,” said Councilor Gaane.
Nonetheless, Councilor Gaane urges the public to still observe basic health protocols like wearing of facemask, social distancing, and frequent handwashing in order to stay safe.
“Remember, by protecting yourself you also protect your family in particular and in the community in general… Continue to follow safety protocols and encourage everyone to get vaccinated” Gaane pointed out.