The Iloilo provincial government celebrated Valentine’s Day with the kickoff vaccination of the pediatric population aged 5 to 11 against the deadly virus. Gov. Arthur Defensor Jr. and Department of Health VI Regional Director Adriano P. Suba-an led the launching at West Visayas State University Cultural Center which is one of the three major vaccination sites of the province. The other two are at Robinsons Mall Pavia and Aleosan District Hospital in Alimodian. Thirteen municipalities also participated in the kickoff activity namely Badiangan, Banate, Batad, Bingawan, Carles, Estancia, Igbaras, Lemery, Miagao, Oton, Pavia, San Joaquin, and San Rafael. Accompanied by their parents, the children received their first dose of Pfizer vaccines.
The Provincial Health Office prepared food treats for kids during vaccination. A TV monitor showing children movies was also made available to keep kids entertained during post-assessment. PHO chief Dr. Maria Socorro Quiñon said they target to administer 10,000 vaccines within a week. The provincial government aims to inoculate a total of 267,470 kids aged 5 to 11 years old in the entire province. Governor Defensor said the pediatric vaccination is the biggest gift giving activity of the province for the month of love, highlighting that the best Valentine’s gift that we can give to our family is by having our children vaccinated. “Let us give the gift of love and the gift of love is a vaccine,” Defensor said.
Dr. Teresa Martirez Hallegado, Philippine Pediatric Society-West Visayas Chapter president who also graced the event, stressed that COVID-19 vaccine is safe for children. She encouraged parents to have their children vaccinated to further prevent community transmission and help the country achieve herd immunity. Furthermore, the governor thanked the partners of the provincial government for their contribution in the successful vaccination program of the province. “We are on track and we are performing well in vaccinating the whole province against COVID-19,” he said. The province has completely vaccinated 72 percent (1,057,816) of its target eligible population. A total of 80 percent (1,168,686) received their first dose. (LHC/Capitol news)