No mailing for non-vaxxed children under 12 years old

President Rodrigo Duterte yesterday urged local government units to pass an ordinance prohibiting unvaccinated children aged 11 and under from shopping malls.

FIRST DAY OF RETURN. A boy looks overwhelmed by the face shield and face shield he wears on the first day of face-to-face pilot lessons at Longos Primary School in Alaminos City, Pangasinan on Monday. In Milagros, Masbate (pictured right), a teacher hears a student reciting from her seat protected by plastic edging as grade 11 and 12 students at Mary Perpetua E. Brioso National High School in Tigbao return to school for the first time in 20 months. Pictures

“I call on all LGUs to consider adopting ordinances limiting the age of minors who may be allowed to visit malls,” he said in his speech to people broadcast late Monday night. “Parents and guardians of unvaccinated minors, please be aware of the risk. I hope that none of our children will have COVID-19, ”added the president. Duterte said even though the economy has reopened as cases remain on the decline, unvaccinated minors should not be allowed out because they lack the means to fight the virus. Earlier today, the Philippine Medical Association (PMA) also urged parents and guardians not to bring children aged 11 and under to shopping malls during the COVID-19 pandemic. PMA President Dr Benito Atienza made the appeal despite the decrease in the number of COVID-19 cases in the country, prompting calls to further relax quarantine restrictions. “Regardless of the alert level, we ask parents not to bring their children inside shopping malls, especially those aged 11 and under,” Atienza said in Filipino. “There are no COVID-19 vaccines approved for them yet. Rather, they should be taken to parks where social distancing can be observed, ”he said.

A two-year-old has reportedly tested positive for COVID-19, but the health ministry said it was an isolated case. Under Secretary of Health Maria Rosario Vergeire said a single case should not be interpreted as a need to prevent children from going out. Some 400,000 minors in the 12-17 age group have already received their first dose of COVID-19 vaccines. The government launched its pediatric vaccination program on October 15 for people with co-morbidities and on November 3 for all minors in the 12-17 age group. Government data shows that there are 12.7 million children between the ages of 12 and 17 in the country, of which 1.2 million have co-morbidities. The government aims to immunize 80 percent, or about 10 million of them by December 2021. The government plans to expand its pediatric immunization program for children under 12 next year.

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