Duque: COVID-19 vaccination of minors may start in Q4

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, September 1) - The government may gradually include children in the COVID-19 vaccination program in the fourth quarter of the year, Health Secretary Francisco Duque said Wednesday.

"Kasi iyong supply natin, makukuha natin ang bulto (We will get the bulk of our supply in the) 4th quarter of this year. Once we get the bulk of the volumes, we can slowly include the children in the program," he told a House hearing, in response to Iloilo 1st District Rep. Janette Garin's question.

The government expects to receive nearly 137 million doses from this month until the end of the year. The National Task Force Against COVID-19 said 51,885,590 coronavirus shots have so far arrived in the country.

Garin also asked the DOH to already figure out how many of the incoming vaccines will be set aside for minors, and Duque said they will.

"We need to review already our allocation plan," he said.

The Food and Drug Administration has allowed the emergency use of Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccines for minors aged 12 to 15. But the DOH has said children will not yet be vaccinated because of the limited supply.