Cebu City open to vaccinating street children

Published February 21, 2022, 1:22 PM

by Calvin Cordova 

CEBU CITY—The Department of Health-Central Visayas (DOH 7) is willing to include street children in its vaccination drive for pediatric population as suggested by a group of medical practitioners here.

Dr. Mary Jean Loreche, chief pathologist and spokesperson of DOH-7, welcomed the suggestion of the Cebu Medical Society to vaccinate street children whom she said are very vulnerable to COVID-19.

“These children roam around unprotected so there is really a need to vaccinate them,” said Loreche.

Loreche emphasized that vaccinating street children needs the consent of their parents.

If their parents cannot be found, the city has to coordinate with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) for the vaccination to materialize.

Loreche also asked the City Health Department headed by Dr. Jeffrey Ibones to have a close coordination with the DSWD.

“There has to be a close coordination. Doc Jeff will have to be able to closely coordinate with DSWD on the matter so that the vaccination that can be done in sequence. So in a particular area, all street kids there can be gathered and they can be educated before they can be vaccinated,” Loreche said.

Ibones said the the city could start vaccinating children who are staying in various drop-in centers.

The city’s vaccination for children aged 5-11 is ongoing.

The city has already vaccinated at least 2,500 children before the city temporarily stopped the inoculation after running out of vaccine.

“We ran out of vaccine but we have already asked the DOH to send us more supply,” said Ibones.