Sotto gets Sinovac jab

Maris Federez   •   May 22, 2021   •   867

MANILA, Philippines — Senate President Vicente Sotto III on Saturday (May 22) received his first dose of Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine.

“After A1, A2, and A3 Senate Employees, finally had mine although I’m A2. I took what was available upon arrival. Had Sinovac!” Sotto said in a message sent to reporters.

Sotto was accompanied by his wife, actress Helen Gamboa, who also got inoculated with the Sinovac vaccine.

Earlier this week, Sotto said that 73 percent of 1,848 Senate employees have been vaccinated against COVID-19 with either Sinovac or Russia-made Sputnik V.

He said that senators have agreed to be among the last ones to get the COVID-19 vaccines allotted for the Upper Chamber of Congress.

Aside from Sotto, Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon, who is 75 years old, also got his first dose of coronavirus vaccine in San Juan City last April 10, being under the A2 category.

Drilon was inoculated with the AstraZeneca vaccine.

The Department of Health said that the second dose of the Sinovac vaccine is taken after 28 days, while the second dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine should be taken within the recommended interval of 12 weeks. —/mbmf

Booster shot, third dose para sa mga senior citizen, immunocompromised, inumpisahan na

Maris Federez   •   November 22, 2021


MANILA, Philippines — Inumpisahan na ng pamahalaan ngayong araw ng Lunes ang pagbabakuna ng booster shot para sa mga senior citizen o nasa A2 category.

Third dose naman ang sinimulan nang ibigay sa mga nasa A3 category na immunocompromised.

Batay sa guidelines na inilabas ng Department of Health (DOH) para sa mga nasa A3 category, limitado pa lamang ito para sa mga may sakit gaya ng HIV, cancer, transplant patients, may immunodeficiency at mga pasyente na sumasailalim sa immunosuppressive treatments.

Payo ng DOH sa mga immunocompromised, maiging kumonsulta muna sa kanilang mga doktor at alamin kung anong brand ang nararapat nilang ipabakuna bilang third dose.

Ayon kay DOH Secretary Francisco Duque III, ito ay para matukoy kung ano ang brand na aakma sa kanilang medical condition.

“Ang mga may comorbidity must always consult with their physicians. They cannot make this unilateral decision on their own. They have to consult with their physician para ma guidance,” ani Duque.

Sa guidelines ng DOH, maaaring mamili ng brand ang mga senior citizen at immunocompromised para sa ikatlong dose ng bakuna.

Pero para naman sa head ng vaccine expert panel ng Department of Science and Technology (DOST) na si Dr. Nina Gloriani, maari pa ring magpabakuna ang mga senior citizen ng kaparehong brand ng kanilang naunang dalawang dose.

Isa si Gloriani sa nabakunahan kanina ng booster shot sa ceremonial vaccination sa East Avenue Medical Center.

Sinovac ang ipinaturok nito na booster shot na kapareho rin ng kanyang unang dalawang dose.

Habang Pfizer vaccine naman ang ipina-booster shot ni Doctor Jaime Montoya ng DOST, na bakunado ng Sinovac sa kanyang primary series.

Payo naman ng DOH, sa mga senior citizens na pasok rin sa kategorya ng immunocompromised, makakabuti rin kung magpapakonsulta muna sila sa kanilang doktor bago magpabakuna ng booster shot.

Muli namang nagpaliwanag ang ahensya hinggil sa pagkakaiba ng booster shot at third dose na ibinibigay sa mga fully vaccinated na laban sa COVID-19.

“The booster dose simply means you are giving it to a group of individuals who have received the primary series. Halimbawa, Sinovac, the assumption is they will reach a level o adequate antibody protection,” ani Duque.

“But over time that protection wanes. That’s why you want to boost it with the third vaccine. Now, third dose will be particularly for the immunocompromised, people who never really reach an adequate level of antibody protection. You’re giving 3rd dose in the hope they will respond better with the 3rd dose,” dagdag nito.

Samantala, hindi pa masabi ng DOH sa ngayon kung kailan mag-uumpisa ang pagbibigay ng third dose sa iba pang nasa A3 category maging sa general population.

Gayuman, siniguro ng pamahalaan na may sapat ng supply ng mga bakuna ang bansa para sa tuloy-tuloy na pagbibigay ng booster shots.  /mbmf (mula sa ulat ni UNTV Correspondent JP Nuñez)

Lacson, Sotto test negative for illegal drugs

Maris Federez   •   November 22, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — Presidential aspirant Senator Panfilo Lacson and running mate Senate President Vicente Sotto III on Monday (November 22) underwent voluntary drug testing at the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) office in Diliman, Quezon City, and tested negative for drug use, a statement from the Partido Reporma said.

Earlier in the day, Sotto said: “Magkaalaman na kung sino matatapang”.

The Lacson-Sotto tandem said their move was to show that they are drug-free and fit to run in the 2022 national and local elections.

Sotto earlier said that ordinary drug tests only determine “shabu” or  “marijuana” use.

However, the PDEA test that they took, he said, is a ‘’multi-drug one-step immunometric assay for the detection of drugs of abuse in urine.’’

In the statement, Lacson said he and Sotto took a multi-drug screening procedure, which is capable of detecting all types of illegal substances in a human body. They both tested negative for illegal drugs.

The tandem went through all the protocols from the signing up of forms to the submission of their urine samples where an attending physician monitored them closely to ensure the authenticity of the tests.

Last Friday, Lacson suggested Friday conducting a random drug test to candidates following President Rodrigo Duterte’s statement on an unnamed presidential candidate who was into cocaine.

“I have never been addicted to drugs all my life, so I have no problem with that. In fact, we should all undergo random testing to make it more credible,” he said.

Meanwhile, in an ambush interview in General Santos City, Senator Christopher ‘Bong’ Go who is also running for president, reiterated that, although it is not mandatory, he is willing to undergo drug testing any time of the day.

“Ako naman po willing magpa-drug test anytime of the day. Anytime po kung kakailanganin,” Go said.

“Though hindi mandatory, pero just to prove lang po sa Pilipino kung sino yung fit na mamuno sa ating bansa ay willing po akong magpa-drug test, any time of the day po,” he added. —/mbmf

Over 3.5 million more doses of Sinovac vaccine arrive in PH

Robie de Guzman   •   November 17, 2021


MANILA, Philippines – Another batch of Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine doses has arrived in the Philippines, the National Task Force (NTF) against COVID-19 said Wednesday.

The shipment containing a total of 3,530,400 doses of Sinovac vaccine landed at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 2 at past 7 a.m.

The NTF said the latest batch was procured by the government through the Asian Development Bank.

The Philippines is set to launch a new phase in its vaccination drive with the rollout of booster shots for healthcare workers and other eligible sectors as part of efforts to widen the immunization coverage.

So far, more than 31 million of the country’s 109 million population have been fully immunized.

The national government has been eyeing to vaccinate up to 70 million people to achieve population protection against COVID-19.


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