With the recent FDA approval of some vaccines for the use of minors, the Quezon City government is now preparing for the city-wide registration and rollout of the vaccination program for this younger population.

The QC Task Force Vax to Normal is currently working with public and private schools to determine the number of currently enrolled students aged 12-17 years.

The estimated number of students who belong to this age bracket is around 267,000, but there could be more students eligible for the vaccination program given that many stopped schooling during the community quarantine period. This data will then be used as a basis for the allocation and registration of this age group for the vaccines.

QC Mayor Joy Belmonte said that the city government considers the inoculation of children as crucial to reaching population protection.

“For months we have been focused on inoculating 80% of Quezon City’s adult population or 1.7 million individuals 18 and above and we have now vaccinated more than that target. It is now time to shift our attention to minors because they are also vulnerable to the virus. Moreover, they comprise about 30% of the city’s approximately 3.1 million population and it is impossible to reach herd immunity or 80% of total population without including them,” Belmonte said.

As of 8 am of September 15, the city has administered 1,750,537 first doses or 102.97 % of its target population. Fully vaccinated individuals stood at 1,232,681 or 72.51 % of the target population.

Data from the City Epidemiology and Disease Surveillance Unit (CESU) showed that as of September 14, the city has recorded a total of 13,441 cases of COVID-19 among children aged 0 to 17.

Mayor Belmonte earlier appealed to the national government to start allowing children to get vaccinated and issue the corresponding guidelines for the rollouts.

QC Task Force Vax to Normal Co-chair Joseph Juico said that while the city is waiting for the go signal, preparations are underway.

“We are closely working with our private and public schools because the strategy now is to put up sites in their campuses and school grounds,” Juico said.

As for the out-of-school youth, homeschooled and students enrolled outside the city, the task force is coordinating with barangay officials for proper enlisting of the said children.

The online booking system developed by the city will also be activated once the vaccines for children are available so they can schedule the date, time and venue of their inoculation.

“Rest assured that once we have the necessary guidelines and vaccine supply from the national government, we will immediately roll the vaccination program for minors,” Juico added.