The Department of Health (DOH) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have approved the use of Chinese COVID-19 vaccine CoronaVac on senior citizens on Wednesday.
The vaccine was developed by Chinese drugmaker Sinovac Biotech. The decision comes after the vaccine experts panel recommended that the vaccine can be used elderly.
“The growing need to protect seniors amid the increasing number of COVID-19 cases in the country,” the group said.
The FDA however said that the vaccination of senior citizens with the Chinese vaccine should be assessed and monitored for their health status and risk exposure.
“After considering the recommendation of the experts and the current situation of high COVID-19 transmission and limited available vaccines, the FDA is allowing the use of Sinovac on senior citizens,” FDA Director General Eric Domingo said in a statement.
“Vaccination should be preceded by an evaluation of the person’s health status and exposure risk to assure that benefits of vaccination outweigh risks,” he added.
The FDA previously said that Sinovac vaccines can only be used to people aged 18 to 59 years old. The agency said that there was no enough evidence or study on the vaccine’s efficacy to senior citizens.
The government has so far received 2 million doses of the Sinovac vaccines. (TDT)