MOBILE VACCINATION. The provincial vaccination team of Ilocos Norte starts a mobile vaccination drive in the hallway of Robinsons Mall in Laoag City in this undated photo. Starting Wednesday (Sept. 28, 2022), the mobile vaccination will also be rolled out in schools to vaccinate more students. (File photo by Leilanie Adriano)

LAOAG CITY – The Provincial Health Office (PHO) of Ilocos Norte on Tuesday said it will begin rolling out its mobile vaccination drive in schools to protect more students against the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).

“If they cannot go to the vaccination site, then, we will go to them... We are still in a pandemic so our Covid-19 activities will continue,” provincial health officer Josephine Ruedas said, noting that the inoculation of students is still voluntary.

She said on Wednesday, the provincial vaccination team will be going to the Ilocos Norte College of Arts and Trades, which has one of the biggest student populations in the province, to hold a mass vaccination against Covid-19.

Ruedas said the vaccination rates for the first and second booster shots among adults in the province are still low.

As of Sept. 19, 2022, the PHO recorded a total of 199,794 or 39.99 percent of individuals aged 18 years old and above who have received their first booster and 27,918 or 5.58 percent of individuals aged 18 years old and above who have completed their second booster shot.

The PHO aims to inoculate at least 50 percent of the province's target population with the first booster by October.

As to senior citizens or those under the A2 category, however, Ruedas said Ilocos Norte remains the country's elderly champion for having the highest rate of elderly people being fully vaccinated against Covid-19 at 96.72 percent.

She said the provincial vaccination team continues to accommodate requests from various government agencies and cooperatives among others for the administration of booster shots to their respective employees.

Among those served were personnel of the Laoag International Airport, National Irrigation Administration, Department of Environment and Natural Resources, and the Ilocos Norte Electric Cooperative. (PNA)