Health Secretary Francisco Duque III on Monday appealed to health workers to get vaccinated using CoronaVac, China’s Sinovac vaccine, despite doubts about its quality.
The first shipment of such vaccine donated by China arrived on Sunday, and this Monday it was immediately injected into health workers and some government officials.
Duque explained that although the Sinovac vaccine is only 50 percent effective against mild infection, it is 100 percent effective against severe or severe COVID-19 infection.
It is the same as other vaccines such as those made by Pfizer-BioNtech, Moderna and AstraZeneca.
“Hinihikayat ko po ang ating health care workers na hangga’t sa maaari po ay magpabakuna po tayo gamit ang Sinovac… Dapat lang na maniwala tayo na itong bakunang ito ay tunay na epektibo at makatutulong sa pag-iwas sa malubha o matinding COVID-19 infection,” Duque said.
What is important, he said, is to reduce the severe cases that often lead to hospitalization or death.
“Kung walang matinding COVID, walang severe COVID, walang hospitalization at walang mamamatay,” said Duque.
Dra. Lulu Bravo, executive director of the Philippine Foundation for Vaccination, shares the same view of the vaccine’s ability in severe COVID-19 cases.
Duque convinces health workers to get Sinovac vaccine
“What’s important is that you have high efficacy for moderate to severe COVID-19,” said Bravo.
Despite this, some health workers insisted that they did not want to be vaccinated with Sinovac.
Alliance of Health Workers national president Robert Mendoza told TeleRadyo that they should be given the vaccine with a higher efficacy rate because they are most exposed to COVID-19.