REP. BERNADETTE “BH” HERRERA
Bagong Henerasyon Party-list
Deputy Speaker | Governor, Rotary Philippines RID3780
Secretary-General, The Party-list Coalition Foundation, Inc.
0917-729-2437 Twitter: @BHherrerady
Mobile number 09177292437
Flu vaccines can provide ‘bystander immunity,’ raise COVID-19 vaccination acceptability
RANKING SOLON ASKS DOH, IATF TO USE FLU VACCINES TO GIVE PINOYS SOME PROTECTION VS SEVERE COVID-19 SYMPTOMS
Given the limited supply and current shortages of COVID-19 vaccines worldwide, I ask the DOH and IATF to consider using most of present supplies of flu vaccines to give Filipinos “bystander immunity” and reduce flu burdens on the health care system.
Conducting flu vaccinations now can also improve vaccine acceptability among people who have some hesitation about getting COVID-19 vaccines.
Although the flu and COVID are caused by different viruses, they do have similar symptoms. Some medical researchers have posited that flu vaccines could provide “bystander immunity” which can might give Pinoys some protection against severe COVID-19 symptoms.
Better to have some protection than no protection at all. This would apply especially to children and young teenagers who are not in the age range of the vaccines with emergency use authorization. So while we all wait for vaccines proven safe to children and young teenagers, the proven flu vaccines can give our young people some protection and in case they get infected with COVID-19, can reduce the severity of the impact.
May mga suplay na po tayo ng flu vaccines sa mga ospital. Hindi na kailangang bumili ng bago. Kailangang isiwalat ngayon ng DOH kung ilan pa ng suplay nila ng flu vaccines na maaaring i-roll-out sa mga health frontliners, kabataan, at senior citizens.
Giving vaccines against influenza, measles, and polio have long been part of the national vaccination program. Rolling them out ahead of the COVID-19 vaccines would also prepare local implementation systems.
DOH should keep on giving these old vaccines because the people still need them. The flu, measles, and polio continue to threaten the health of Pinoys. (END)