Garin urges gov’t to allow 2nd booster for general public: ‘Millions have already expired and are going to waste’

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By Billy Begas

Former Health Secretary and incumbent Iloilo Rep. Janette Garin urged the government to allow the general population to receive their second booster shot against COVID-19.

Unlike before, Garin said the country now has sufficient supplies of vaccines.

Based on June data, Garin said of the 245,233,560 vaccines that the government procured, only 152,012,792 have been utilized.

The Department of Health (DOH) admitted that around 27 million vaccines will expire this month, Garin said.

“Hanggang ngayon, limitado pa rin ang maaring makakuha ng pangalawang booster shot…… Babalik ba tayo dun sa baluktot na paniniwala, ubusin muna ang lahat ng senior citizens before we vaccinate those with co-morbidities? We have enough vaccines. Millions have already expired and are going to waste,” Garin said.

She added: “For those wanting additional protection, why prevent them from such? Yung ayaw, huwag pilitin. Yung gusto, payagan. Mahirap ba yan?”

The former Health Secretary also noted that in other countries Sinovac vaccines are now being used for three years old and above.

Garin said she heard information that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has already approved the use of Sinovac for three years old and above in the country “ngunit hinaharang o ayaw ipaalam sa taong bayan?”

“Paano tayo magiging handa sa napipintong face to face classes sa Agosto kung kulang ang ating protection,” she pointed out.

While the government is urging the public to get vaccinated, Garin said it is also the government that is actually preventing those who wanted to receive COVID-19 vaccines.