The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) said Thursday, that individuals who intend to be inoculated against COVID-19 will be informed of the brand on the vaccination site. In a statement, DILG Secretary Eduardo Año clarified that local government units (LGUs) are no longer allowed to make advance announcements of the brand that will be used in the vaccination.
Secretary Año issued the directive to the LGUs upon the recommendation of the Department of Health, as he assured the public that all vaccines have gone through a stringent approval process and are therefore safe and efficacious.
Año echoed what experts say, that the best vaccine is the one that is available, therefore in order to overcome brand preference, LGUs should not announce the brand of vaccine to be used in vaccination centers. He said that the person will be informed of the brand in the vaccination center and he will have to give his informed consent but if he refuses, he will have to go back to the back of the line.
According to Año, the government is just taking this step to prevent a repeat of mass gatherings and long lines that occurred when vaccine brands are announced beforehand. Secretary Año stressed that the individual’s right to information is still fully respected, but we need to educate the people in order to overcome brand preference.
Lastly, the DILG chief again encouraged the public to support the government’s vaccination program because it is the duty of everyone to protect themselves, their family, and their country by being vaccinated. Earlier this week, long queues for Pfizer vaccines at vaccination sites in Parañaque City and Manila became viral in social media.