THE Department of Health (DOH) will no longer require vital signs screening for all vaccine recipients to speed up the vaccination process, Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said on Friday, May 14, 2021.
Vaccination teams, however, will still screen those who are hypertensive and have other underlying medical conditions.
Vergeire said the vital signs screening has been identified as one of the factors causing the long queues at vaccination sites. Vaccination teams check an individual’s blood pressure, temperature and pulse rate, among others.
She said the Philippine Society of Hypertension and the Philippine Heart Association had advised that there is no need to check for vital signs before vaccination, except for those with hypertension and other medical conditions.
“Ang kailangan lang bantayan ng ating healthcare workers ay yung meron na talagang established na hypertension at talagang nakikita natin na meron silang organ damage. Sa isang tingin pa lang ng doktor, alam mo kung sino ang dapat,” Vergeire said.
Vergeire said there will be a designated lane for people with underlying medical conditions.
“Naglagay din tayo diyan sa guidelines natin that there should be a separate lane para dito sa mga taong gusto nating obserbahan because of their established history ng kanilang mga sakit para hindi sila nakakadagdag do’n sa pila,” she said.
Another factor that has caused a delay in the vaccination process is the insistence of some individuals to go to vaccination sites without a confirmed schedule.
“Hopefully, ipatupad na ng local government units natin para maibsan yung pagpila at paghaba ng pila at pag-aantay ng mga kababayan natin sa vaccination sites," she said.
Meanwhile, Vergeire said a survey conducted by the DOH on March 19 to 30 showed that vaccine confidence has increased.
She said 75 percent of the respondents expressed willingness to get vaccinated while 85.5 percent believed that Covid-19 vaccines are safe and efficacious.
The government aims to vaccinate at least 70 million Filipinos by the end of the year.
Since March 1, more than two million individuals have been vaccinated, including 514,655 who have also received their second dose.
The Philippines has received a total of 7,779,050 doses of Covid-19 vaccines since February 28, 2021. (SunStar Philippines)