By Eden Eve Lacea

PHOTO:  Inquirer/Nino Jesus Orbeta

The Department of Health (DOH) assured the public that the COVID-19 vaccines are safe for children ages 5-11 despite a court petition filed by some parents on the Quezon City Regional Trial Court.

Furthermore, the health department emphasized they will continue inoculations of the said age group to immunize all sectors of society.

"As far as the national government is concerned, we remain steadfast in our commitment to protect all sectors of society, which include children and other vulnerable groups. As such, we will proceed with the vaccination rollout for the said age group as planned,” DOH said.

The health sector affirmed that vaccinations of children are essential to the protection of many Filipinos, and will help in the safe reopening of schools and public places.

“Vaccinating them is crucial to achieve our goal of protecting all members of the Filipino family,” they mentioned.

“This will enable us to continue the safe reopening of schools and other public spaces, as well as ensure the full economic recovery of our nation,” DOH added.

Vaccinations of minors from ages 5 to 11 have been decided after thorough research by health experts and approved usage in many countries.

DOH also noted that among 8.1 million vaccinated children worldwide, no reports of death or severe complications were recorded.

“Moreover, it is worth noting that there have been no adverse events recorded among the over 9 million individuals from the 12 to 17 age group who have been vaccinated with at least one dose, since their vaccination rollout began in October of last year,” according to the health department.

More than 100,000 pre-registrations for the pediatric vaccination drive had already been recorded.

However, the said vaccine rollout was moved to February 7 to ascertain sufficient distribution of COVID-19 vaccines.

Pfizer is the only vaccine that is authorized to be administered to minors aged 5-11, and will also be distributed in a lower dosage than the older age groups.