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Palace: COVID-19 booster shots won’t be given to health workers just yet

Malacañang said Tuesday that COVID-19 vaccine booster shots won't be administered to health workers amid the COVID-19 pandemic just yet.

"This has only been recommended by the Vaccine Experts Panel, to give booster to our health workers," presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said.

"This is yet to be approved by the IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force)," Roque added.

World Health Organization (WHO) Country Representative Dr. Rabindra Abeyasinghe earlier said the WHO is calling for a moratorium on administering booster shots "unless it is absolutely necessary for immunocompromised individuals."

Abeyasinghe said that this is needed to address COVID-19 vaccine inequity among countries.

"This is not the time for booster, and we simply do not have enough safety and efficacy information on third dose," the WHO official said during the Laging Handa Briefing.

Earlier in the day, Taguig-Pateros Representative Alan Peter Cayetano and his allies filed a resolution calling on the IATF to provide booster shots to health workers and the immunocompromised amid the increasing number of COVID-19 infections.

House Resolution 40 was lodged by Cayetano, Taguig Representative Laarni Cayetano, Anakalusugan party-list Representative Michael Defensor, Laguna Representative Dan Fernandez, Batangas Representative Raneo Abu, and Bulacan Representative Jose Antonio Alvarado.

The Philippines has around 1.7 million health workers.

The COVID-19 vaccination program started last March 1, with health workers deemed the topmost priority. — RSJ, GMA News