Mascots, ice cream, circus: How some Metro Manila LGUs kicked off vaccination of kids 5-11

February 7, 2022 - 1:53 PM
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Pedia vax for COVID-19
Entrance of a pediatric vaccination site at SM Aura and mascots in SM North EDSA in these photos shared on Feb. 7, 2022. (Photos from the Taguig Public Information Office and PTV via Daniel Manalastas)

More pediatric vaccination sites are taking the COVID-19 vaccination to another level by adorning their sites with colorful, kid-friendly designs and motifs to make the experience pleasant for minors.

The national government began its pilot rollout of COVID-19 vaccines to children aged 5 to 11 years old on February 7 in the National Capital Region.

These vaccines will also be rolled out in Central Luzon and Calabarzon on February 8 and nationwide on February 14.

A reformulated dose of Pfizer will be used, in which the COVID-19 vaccine has a lower concentration and lower dosage compared to those given to the older population.

Pfizer was the only COVID-19 jab brand granted an emergency use authorization for the pediatric vaccination.

Health Undersecretary Myrna Cabotaje said the government aims to inoculate 15.5 million children belonging to the 5 to 11 age group in the country.

She added that pediatric vaccination is not mandatory but it is highly encouraged for children to be protected against COVID-19. Those accompanying them needed to show proof of their relationship to the vaccinees.

According to the data of the Department of Health, 69.2% of the reported infections among those 17 years old and below consists of children aged 0 to 11 years old, as of January 2022.

“Parents will give consent. We will also explain to the child what would happen during vaccination, what we will give them, the benefits of the vaccine and its side effects,” Cabotaje said in an interview before.

The DOH said that more than 8.7 million children have been globally vaccinated against COVID-19 and that “there have been no reports of deaths attributable to vaccines.”

To prepare for the pediatric vaccination, some sites mounted colorful and cheerful designs in their venues to accommodate children and make the experience as pleasant as possible.

Caloocan City

The SM Grand Central in Caloocan City is among the sites for the COVID-19 pediatric vaccination.

According to Caloocan City Mayor Oscar Malapitan, children can also get vaccinated in Caloocan City Medical Center, Caloocan City North Medical CenterCaloocan Sports Complex and Bagong Silang Elementary School.

Taguig City

Those in Taguig City can enjoy circus-themed decorations for the pediatric vaccination at the SMX Convention Center in SM Aura.

The Lakeshore Vaccination Hub is also accommodating the same age group.

Taguig residents and those studying in the city only need to register to the TRACE (Taguig Registry for Access Engagement) app to get a slot.

Quezon City 

Kids can also get vaccinated in the SM North EDSA Skydome where there are mascots that can entertain them in the area.

The Philippine Heart Center, meanwhile, offers free ice cream scoops to children after they have been vaccinated.

Those waiting for their turn will receive coloring materials. Disney movies will also be screened for their viewing.

Last Friday, San Juan City earned online attention for mounting balloons and colorful standees of cartoon characters to prepare for the pediatric vaccination.

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