VMMC director cites studies showing Sinovac can prevent severe COVID-19 disease
By Meanne Corvera
Eagle News Service
(Eagle News) – Six of those who received the Sinovac vaccines at the Veterans Memorial Medical Center were sent to the emergency unit of the hospital for observation after experiencing adverse reactions minutes after getting the shots.
A 40-year old female employee felt dizzy and developed rashes five minutes after getting the vaccine.
Another male utility employee assigned at the records section of the Philippine Veterans Affairs Office (PVAO) felt dizzy, but according to his co-workers he may just have been exhausted since he had to bike from PVAO to the VMMC hospital to get to the vaccination site.
Three more had hypertension after getting the shot.
Dr. Giovanni Mea, however, said that allergic reactions after getting the vaccines in some people is just normal.
At the VMMC, more than 1,000 had the Sinovac shots, under the brand name Coronava, but most did not have any allergic reactions.
The vaccination was done at the VMMC’s outpatient department, while the registration and screening were done at the hospital parking area. This also served as the post vaccination area where those given the vaccines were observed after getting the jabs.
Among those who got the Sinovac vaccines at the hospital were doctors and other military medical frontliners of the hospital.
-Protection from severe COVID-19 assured-
Dr. Mea himself said that he did not feel anything after getting the shots.
“No pain whatsoever, I don’t feel any problem at this point. I’m very grateful naman na nakatanggap ako ng vaccine,” he said.
“I hope other people will not be afraid of the process. Mukhang ok naman po. We studied the data. Ang importante po dito, this will protect against severe COVID-19. The studies show that it has 100 protection against severen covid-19 reaction and this will prevent hospitalization. Yan ang habol natin dito,” Dr. Mea added.
Another doctor who got the Sinovac jab, Dr. Paul Cruz, said that he got the jab since he wants to be protected from severe COVID-19 disease.
“Ang habol ko dito ay may 90 percent protection against severe COVID-19. Kung sakaling tamaan ka, at least di na magkakaroon ng grabeng effect,” he said.
Another nurse who was interviewed, Patricia Narvaja, said that getting the Sinovac vaccine was better than having no vaccine at all.
-No need to fear vaccines, says doctors-
But the hospital administration admitted that many who had initially signed up for vaccination had backed out after learning that the SInovac vaccines were to be used instead of Pfizer vaccines.
Hospital officials said that they would not force their people to get the SInovac shot if they don’t want to.
“Nakakarinig sila ng hindi magagandang report sa TV, mga ganun. Siguro natatakot, may agam-agam. Pero hindi naman malaking percentage ito. Marami pa rin ang nakapila na magpapabakuna,” Dr. Dominador Chiong, Jr, hospital director of the VMMC said.
But he assured that the studies on Sinovac have shown that it can prevent moderate to severe COVID-19 of up to 100 percent.
“Simply put, pag nagkaroon ka ng COVID infection, Ibig sabihin 100 percent hindi ka mamamatay,” Dr. Chiong said.
VMMC targets to vaccinate up to 30,000 civilian employees of the Department of National Defense (DND) and its attached agencies.
(Translated from video report by Meanne Corvera, Eagle News Service)