Senatorial aspirant Gilbert "Gibo" Teodoro on Tuesday called on the government to intensify its efforts against disinformation on pediatric COVID-19 vaccination as many minors are now allowed outside following the de-escalation of alert level status in many areas in the country.
Teodoro made his appeal after learning that vaccine hesitancy among minors, especially those aged 5 to 11, remains high due to lack of knowledge of their parents about the COVID-19 vaccine.
He also cited the national government's pandemic task force that said only 91,000 children aged 5 to 11 received their jab as compared to the at least nine million people aged 12 to 17 who already completed their doses.
"We do not want to see our children to crowd hospital facilities due to COVID-19 just because their parents have believed 'fake news' about the side effects of the vaccine to children. The fight against disinformation should start in the barangay level," Teodoro, a former Defense secretary, said.
The senatorial aspirant also recommended bringing vaccination drives close to home for minors because some parents may be hesitant to take public transportation with their children.
The parents might also find it inconvenient to bring their children to the vaccination sites, he added.
Teodoro believed the COVID-19 vaccination drive may also be implemented similar to how barangay health units conduct other immunization programs.