The City Health Office (CHO) has raised concern that some of those in the priority category of vaccine recipients are missing their scheduled second doses by either being late or not showing up at all.
City health officer Dr. Ric Panganiban did not say how many missed their second shot of the COVID-19 vaccine, adding that they will need to make follow up calls to the supposed vaccine recipients. He clarified in a follow up interview that in general, those scheduled for their second dose sometimes do not show up on their scheduled dates to the vaccination sites despite the city government’s calls for inoculation.
“May mga araw na maraming bumabalik para sa second dose, pero minsan, kaunti lang. Ang iba nale-late lang, ‘yong na-miss nila ang araw na scheduled na sila, pero mayroon talagang iba na hindi na talaga bumalik [para sa second dose]. ‘Yong mga ‘yon ang mga dapat namin tawagin ulit,” said Panganiban.
Panganiban theorized that some reasons why the first dose recipients did not return could be simply be that they forgot about their schedule or that they may have been scared of some adverse effects.
“’Yong mga hindi na nakakabalik, baka nakakalimutan, baka nadala ng side effect noong una,” said Panganiban. He did not elaborate what side effects were reported to the city vaccination team so far.
“Isa yon sa mga tinitingnan na problema kasi kailangan talaga nila bumalik para sa second dose. Matatawag ka lang na fully vaccinated kapag natanggap na ang second dose. Kasi pag wala ‘yon mahina ang tama kung hindi kumpleto. Kaya kailangan naming tawagan ang mga nag-first dose na bumalik na sila,” he explained.
So far, only those in priority groups A1, A2, and A3 have been targeted by the city government for priority vaccination. These include medical health workers, senior citizens, and persons with comorbidities. All three groups received vaccines from pharmaceutical brands AstraZeneca and Sinovac which have been supplied by the World Health Organization (WHO) COVAX Facility.
Panganiban added that 300 doses of vaccines from Russian company Gamaleya have arrived and will be deployed to the priority groups.
Panganiban estimates that 10% of Puerto Princesa’s 180,000 vaccine-eligible population have already been given their first dose of vaccines. (with a report from Ruth Rodriguez)