FUN VAX DAY. A young girl poses with three mascots wearing dwarf costumes during the rollout of Covid-19 vaccination for children aged 5 to 11 years old at the SM Megamall in Mandaluyong City on Tuesday. The National Task Force against Covid-19 on Thursday (Feb. 10, 2022) says the Philippines has so far administered low-dose Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine to 26,363 children aged 5 to 11 years old. (PNA photo by Robert Alfiler)

MANILA – The Philippines has so far administered reformulated low-dosing Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine to 26,363 children aged 5 to 11 years old, the National Task Force (NTF) against Covid-19 reported on Thursday.

Some 40 hospital-based and local government unit (LGU)-based vaccination sites have initially launched the Covid-19 vaccination program for the pediatric 5-11 age group that started on Monday.

Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr., NTF chief and vaccine czar, earlier cited the crucial contribution of vaccinating individuals working within the education sector and protecting minors against Covid-19, to the resumption of physical classes in the country.

"Inoculating students and other members of the academic community will ensure their safety when schools finally reopen," Galvez said.

Galvez assured that no deaths were reported related to inoculating minors with Covid-19 vaccines.

He noted that more than 8.7 million children are now fully vaccinated worldwide.

Meanwhile, Education Secretary Leonor Briones expressed full support to expanding the ‘Resbakuna Kids’ program nationwide, saying it is significant to the safe reopening of face-to-face classes, particularly those in high-risk areas.

“We cannot move to new forms, to new ways of teaching unless our children are safe, unless they are healthy, unless they are also happy with the learning experience,” Briones said.

By February 14, the vaccination of kids 5-11 will be expanded to more sites nationwide.

The government eyes to vaccinate more than 39.41 million children aged zero to 17 years old, of which 12.74 million are aged 12 to 17 years old, 15.56 million are 5 to 11 years old, and 11.11 million of zero to 4 years old. (PNA)