By J. Jala | 08:00 AM February 04, 2022
The Department of Health (DOH) has postponed the pediatric Covid-19 vaccination for 5 to 11 years old children scheduled today, February 4.
The announcement was made hours after a mother and a former television journalist petitioned the Quezon City Regional Trial Court to stop the vaccination of children in this age group.
“The rollout for vaccinating children aged 5-11 years old will be postponed for a few days due to logistical challenges,” the DOH said in an advisory Thursday.
The vaccination drive for this age group was initially scheduled on February 4 in six different sites in Metro Manila but was moved to Feb. 7, Monday.
About 15.56 million Filipino children age 5 to 11 are targeted for vaccination against Covid-19.
DOH explained that the postponement was to ensure “adequate preparation and distribution” of the Pfizer vaccines which is set to arrive on Feb. 4, Friday, the same day the inoculation drive was supposed to start.
As of writing, only Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine has been given emergency use authorization for kids aged five to 11.
Girlie Samonte and former ABS-CBN reporter Dominic Almelor petitioned for a temporary restraining order (TRO) on the rollout of the pediatric vaccine by the DOH and to declare it “unconstitutional and null and void.”
They argued that the DOH’s Memorandum Order No. 2022-0041, which serves as an interim guideline on the rollout of the pediatric vaccine, “was issued in grave abuse of discretion and unconstitutional, given all the red flags against [the] administration of Covid-19 vaccines to children.”