Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 shot has been approved for use in individuals aged 12 and above, the Department of Health announced Tuesday. 

Although the use of the vaccine has been expanded, DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said the country’s current vaccination strategy will remain intact due to limited vaccine supplies. 

“While we welcome more vaccines that are approved for children and adolescents, due to limited vaccine supply, our vaccination strategy remains the same — prioritize the vulnerable and adhere to our prioritization framework,” she said in a statement to the press.

“The general consensus of our vaccine experts is to revisit pediatric and adolescent vaccination once our vaccine supply has stabilized,” she added. 

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) bestowed emergency use approval for Pfizer in January of this year, however, only individuals aged 16 years and above were allowed to be vaccinated with it. 

As of June 6, the Philippines has administered 5.95 million COVID-19 vaccines. Out of this, 1.54 million individuals are fully vaccinated. 

The rollout of vaccines has also expanded to the A4 priority group, which consists of essential workers. It was kicked off at SM City Sucat in Pasay City yesterday (June 07). 

The initial phase will target workers in the NCR+8 region – in Metro Manila, Cavite, Bulacan, Rizal, Laguna, Pampanga, Metro Cebu, and Metro Davao. Meanwhile, in the second phase, essential workers outside the NCR+8 region will be the target.

Those eligible are : 

  • A4.1 – private-sector workers who work outside their homes
  • A4.2 – employees in government agencies and instrumentalities, including government-owned or controlled corporations and local government units
  • A4.3 – informal sector workers and self-employed who work outside their homes and those working in private households

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