COVID-19 Fact Checks

FALSE: COVID-19 booster shots are not authorized in the Philippines

Rappler.com
FALSE: COVID-19 booster shots are not authorized in the Philippines
The health department has authorized the use of COVID-19 booster shots for everyone aged 18 or older since December 2, 2021
At a glance
  • Claim: COVID-19 booster shots are not authorized in the Philippines, as of December 20. 
  • Rating: FALSE
  • The facts: The health department has authorized the use of COVID-19 booster shots for everyone aged 18 or older since December 2, 2021 
  • Why we fact-checked this: This was flagged by Facebook’s fact-checking tool as potentially misleading. As of writing, it has 64 reactions, 50 comments, and 5,100 views on Facebook.
Complete details

A TikTok video that was reshared on Facebook on December 20 said that COVID-19 booster shots were not authorized in the Philippines. 

The video featured a clip from GMA’s 24 Oras, wherein the reporter said: “Nagbabala ang DOH sa mga nagpa-booster shot ng COVID vaccines na hindi pa awtorisado sa Pilipinas. Ayon kay Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire, hindi accountable ang gobyerno sakaling magkaroon ng untoward reaction sa mga naturukan ng booster shot. Sinusuri pa ang FDA (Food and Drug Administration) application ng Pfizer, Astrazeneca, Sinovac, at Sputnik V para sa amended emergency use authorization na nagpapahintulot sa booster shots.”

(The Department of Health is warning those who are receiving COVID booster vaccines that these are not yet authorized in the Philippines. According to Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire, the government is not liable if there are any untoward reactions observed in people who received a booster shot. The Food and Drug Administration is still reviewing Pfizer, Astrazeneca, Sinovac, and Sputnik V’s applications for amended emergency use authorization that will allow them to be administered as booster shots.)

This was flagged by Facebook’s fact-checking tool as potentially misleading. As of writing, it has 64 reactions, 50 comments, and 5,100 views on Facebook.

The claim is false. 

The health department has authorized the use of COVID-19 booster shots for everyone aged 18 or older since December 2. 

The original GMA News 24 Oras segment premiered on the network’s official YouTube channel on November 12.

On December 2, the Department of Health said that the FDA granted emergency approval to Pfizer, Moderna, and AstraZeneca to be used as an additional dose. 

As of December 22, adults can receive a booster three months after their second dose of  AstraZeneca, Moderna, Pfizer, Sinovac, or Sputnik V vaccine, or at least two months after their Janssen vaccine. 

People aged 12 to 17 are authorized to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, but are not yet recommended to receive booster shots. – Vernise Tantuco/Rappler.com

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