No takers for Sinovac jabs in Quezon

Emmanuel Tupas - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — At least 37,000 doses of China-made Sinovac vaccine in Quezon province remain unused as many residents prefer other brands.

In an interview over ABS-CBN’s Teleradyo, Gov. Danilo Suarez cited reports from health units that many residents are waiting for COVID-19 vaccines developed by Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Moderna, Gamaleya and Janssen.

Suarez said the provincial government would issue an ordinance to ensure that there would be no vaccine preference.

He said residents of the province have become picky following reports on the arrival of their preferred vaccine brands.

Suarez said unverified information from various social media platforms, including claims about the side effects of COVID vaccines, have fueled vaccine hesitancy.

He called on his constituents to take the vaccines being offered to them regardless of the brand.

Vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. had earlier called on local government officials to pass ordinances that will support the “no vaccine preference policy.”

 Weekly COVID-19 tests for unvaxxed

Meanwhile, in Negros Occidental, unvaccinated local government employees  in Cadiz and Bago cities are required to present a negative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction or rapid antigen test result either weekly or every 15 days at their own expense.

Mayors Salvador Escalante Jr. of Cadiz and Nicholas Yulo of Bago issued separate memoranda on the mandatory vaccination of city government employees.

Escalante said employees and consultants should submit their vaccination card or certificate to their department heads or supervisors before the end of the month.

Unvaccinated city hall workers who fail to submit negative COVID test results will be marked absent while consultants will not be able to receive their honoraria.

Negros Occidental Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson called on all mayors in the province to ensure that local government employees are vaccinated against COVID-19. – Gilbert Bayoran

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