DOH OKs 2nd Covid-19 vax booster shot for senior citizens, health workers

(FILES) In this file photo taken on November 30, 2021 a doctor vaccinates a patient against Covid-19 at a vaccination center in Sonthofen, southern Germany, amid the ongoing coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic. Germany's parliament on April 7, 2022 rejected a government-backed proposal for mandatory Covid vaccines for people above 60, in a stinging defeat for Chancellor Scholz's coalition. Christof STACHE / AFP

Senior citizens and healthcare workers can now also receive their second booster dose against Covid-19, the Department of Health (DOH) announced on Wednesday, May 18.

“This is the moment we have all been waiting for. After careful study and consideration of the best available evidence, we shall now roll out effective immediately the second booster for our frontline health workers and senior citizens. This is part of how we fight back against the virus,” said DOH Undersecretary Myrna Cabotaje in a statement.

The Covid-19 vaccines to be used are Pfizer and Moderna, to be given at least four months after the administration of the first booster dose, the DOH said.

“The administration of second booster doses to eligible individuals shall be implemented simultaneously nationwide, depending on the readiness of the Regional and Local Vaccination Operation Centers (RVOC/LVOCs), implementing units, and vaccination sites,” the DOH said.

Senior citizens and healthcare workers only need to present their vaccination cards showing the date of the first booster dose as well as any valid government issued identification card.

To recall, the DOH started administering second booster shots to immunocompromised individuals last month.

“The second booster for our health workers and senior citizens will enhance protection given by the first booster and the primary series against all variants, including the recent Omicron subvariant BA.2.12.1,” said DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire.

“It fortifies the defense of health workers and highly vulnerable seniors. Everyone eligible can get the second booster jab done at the LGU vaccination sites nearest you. They are safe, effective, and free of charge,” she added.