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The PRC’s ‘Bakuna Bus’ is presently in Dagupan, aiming to increase the vaccination rate among children.

Following its debut on Monday, the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) Bakuna Bus has arrived in this city to cater to the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) immunization of 5 to 11-year-old children in schools.

For ten days, the air-conditioned bus will function as a mobile vaccination station, able to accommodate over 1,000 people every day in various schools throughout the city, in order to increase the immunization rate among students here.

PRC Pangasinan officer-in-charge Rex Vincent Escao stated in an interview that following the launch, the Department of Education will set the schedules for the city’s various schools.

“Adults will be accommodated in a separate location.” For example, if a parent of a child receiving a vaccine wishes to have a booster dose, he added, “we will accommodate them but apart from where the children are receiving vaccinations.”

Even individuals outside of Dagupan City, according to Escao, are welcome to use the Bakuna Bus service.

“Within 10 days, we hope to vaccinate all of the city’s unvaccinated 5 to 11-year-old children.” We would go there if they still requested an extension after 10 days or if other areas in Pangasinan requested it,” he continued.

The Department of Health (DOH), the PRC, and the City Health Office, according to Escao, are covering the bus expenses, while the Department of Health (DOH), the PRC, and the City Health Office are providing the manpower.

Following their vaccination, the youngsters were handed instructional packs.

Dr. Paula Paz Sydiongco, regional director of the Department of Health in Ilocos, said the Bakuna Bus is a “great benefit” for health workers’ access to children in a separate interview.

She stated that the vaccination rate for children aged 5 to 11 years old remains at 20%, while fully immunized adults in the region now have an 84 percent coverage rate.

“Vaccination against Covid-19 is critical. Although the number of cases per day in the region has dropped to two, the virus is still present. “There could be another rise in cases if another variation enters the region,” she noted.

In this city, over 19,000 children are still unvaccinated.

Meanwhile, Allen Evangelista, a mother from Pangasinan’s Calasiao town, said she preferred to get her autistic daughter vaccinated against the virus.

“She is terrified of hospitals, so getting sick is quite difficult for her.” She had previously had her first dose and was now receiving her second dose for protection,” she explained.

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