(PNA file photo) 

MANILA – There is an ongoing discussion among experts and government officials if there is a need to redefine the term “fully vaccinated” with the inclusion of the booster shot requirement, National Vaccination Operations Center (NVOC) chairperson, Dr. Myna Cabotaje, said Thursday.

Cabotaje noted that the term “fully vaccinated” applies to those who received the primary series of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) vaccines and is based on the earlier definition by the World Health Organization (WHO).

“We are looking at the possibility of adding a booster dose. Baka pwedeng fully vaccinated, updated na vaccination para mahikayat ‘yung mga tao para magpa-booster (maybe it can be fully vaccinated, updated vaccination to urge the people to get booster shot),” she said in an interview over Teleradyo.

Cabotaje said some studies are currently being discussed to encourage more Filipinos to avail of the third dose that provides additional protection against the dreaded Covid-19 infection.

Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr., National Task Force (NTF) against Covid-19 chief, earlier said the massive booster administration efforts have greatly contributed to the decline of Covid-19 cases in the country.

Galvez likewise said the government might amend the definition of "fully vaccinated" from having two primary doses to including booster shots.

"Meaning, when you say fully vaccinated, you were administered with at least three. The experts' panel is now tackling that matter," he said, noting that discussions on the matter are still on the table.

The NTF’s latest data showed that more than 65.8 million Filipinos received the Covid-19 primary vaccine series, including those administered with the single-shot Janssen and Sputnik Light jabs, with only about 12 million having booster doses. (PNA)