Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana won’t be getting vaccinated with Sinovac vaccine donated by China.
And the reason for his decision? Lorezana is too old to get the Chinese-developed vaccine, which has not been recommended by local drug regulators for senior citizens.
The country’s defense actually volunteered to show leadership by example but learned he can’t be get the Sinovac vaccine due to his old age. Lorenzana is 72 years old.
“I wanted to be the first to receive the Sinovac vaccine in DND to build trust and confidence among personnel but health experts advised that those over 59 should not be vaccinated. Besides, the front liners will have first priority,” he tweeted on February 28.
In another tweet, Lorenzana said he was informed that he was not qualified for the Sinovac vaccines.
The Chinese-made vaccines have not been recommended for health workers and seniors by the country’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) due to varying efficacy rates.
“I volunteered to be among the first to be vaccinated but was told that I’m not qualified based on Sinovac’s age limit (18-59). I wanted to lead by example to not cast doubt against Sinovac and hopefully bring confidence among DND personnel,” he said in a later tweet.
Although he passed up the vaccine line, Lorenzana attended the rollout of the vaccines for intended health workers in military hospitals as well as Department of National Defense personnel Monday, March 1.
“All is set for today’s rollout, with 100,000 doses allocated for DND Personnel. 29,040 of which are for the health workers of the Veterans and VLuna medical centers, military and civilian staff of the DND-Proper,” he said.