PH expert panel set to make recommendations next week on use of COVID-19 vaccine booster shots

Published July 29, 2021, 8:00 PM

by Charissa Luci-Atienza 

The country’s Vaccine Expert Panel (VEP) will likely come up with “some recommendations” next week on the use of coronavirus disease (COVID) booster shots for those fully vaccinated individuals, particularly the country’s healthcare workers and those who are immunocompromised.

A staff member displays samples of the COVID-19 inactivated vaccine at Sinovac Biotech Ltd., in Beijing, capital of China, March 16, 2020. (Xinhua/Zhang Yuwei / MANILA BULLETIN)

VEP head Dr. Nina Gloriani disclosed this in a Palace press briefing on Thursday, July 29.

“Actually we want to come up with some recommendations soon siguro (maybe) by next week at least for some of our healthcare workers and yung mga immunocompromised (for those who are immunocompromised),” she said.

In a radio interview last week, Gloriani had noted that should the government allow the use of COVID booster jabs for those inoculated with China’s CoronaVac, the initial list of priority recipients may include the elderly, those with comorbidity and the healthcare workers.

Related story:

“May uuanahin po tayo dyan, pero hindi lang po Sinovac ang may problema dyan (We will have a priority list, it is not only Sinovac that has an issue),” Gloriani said.

She said the A1 (workers in frontline health services), A2 (all senior citizens), and A3 (persons with comorbidities) will likely be part of the priority list for COVID-19 booster vaccination.

She said the panel is taking note of a study conducted by Chinese researchers showing that antibodies from Sinovac’s COVID-19 jabs fade after six months and that a third shot “had a strong booster effect.”

“We are actually studying it very closely…our members will be monitoring all of these,” the VEP chief said.