Only 12% of PGH personnel willing to receive Sinovac vaccine, spokesman says

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, February 27) — An official from the Philippine General Hospital, one of the first institutions to receive China’s Sinovac vaccine, said only 12% of their personnel are willing to receive the shot.

“As of last night sa mga 2,000 employees, healthcare workers, support staff ng PGH mga 12% lang po ang pumapayag na magpabakuna ng Sinovac,” PGH Spokesperson Dr. Jonas del Rosario told CNN Philippines’ Newsroom Weekend.

[Translation: As of last night, of about 2,000 employees, healthcare workers, support staff of PGH, only 12% agreed to be inoculated with Sinovac.]

He added that rollout will still push through for these workers, while the remaining 88% will still be prioritized once another set of vaccine arrives.

Del Rosario said plans for the implementation of the program are still being finalized, and that a ceremonial vaccination will be held at the PGH on Monday. This may involve hospital personnel and members of the administration, he added.

On Sunday, 600,000 vials of CoronaVac are expected to arrive in the country that will be first administered to health workers in COVID-19 referral hospitals.

Earlier this week, the Food and Drug Administration granted emergency use authorization to the said vaccine but warned that this may not be the best vaccine for health workers, especially those exposed to COVID-19 patients, given its 50.4% efficacy rate.

After further evaluation, the country’s health experts have agreed to recommend the use of the Sinovac vaccine for the said group since this will be the first ones to be available and to already give them the protection they need. However, they are given the chance to decide whether to receive it or not based on their risk assessment.

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Del Rosario assured that those who declined to receive the said vaccine will still be prioritized once another batch of vaccine arrives.

Moreover, he noted that those previously infected by the virus will not be prioritized in the administration of the vaccine since there is still no data on its possible effects to recovered patients since Sinovac’s clinical trials did not involve such group.