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MAASIN CITY (PIA) -- City Mayor Nacional Mercado appealed to all Maasinhons not to be choosy as to what type of COVID-19 vaccine they may want to be jabbed with, saying the best vaccine is the one that is available.

The mayor said he had observed some individuals arriving in vaccination sites but declined to be injected after learning the vaccine on hand was not the one they preferred.

Good that there was a ready substitution list, thus there was no wastage, Mayor Mercado said at the Kapihan sa PIA.

“During the survey, what was asked was whether you want to be vaccinated or not, and not what vaccine do you want," the mayor said, speaking in the dialect.

There is no other way for now to counter COVID-19 than through vaccination so things may go back to normal, Mayor Mercado said, adding that vaccines work like a shield offering a layer of protection against the mutating virus.

While some people are selective, others are also hesitant, obviously influenced by facebook posts that border on fake news and unverified sources, but overall, they are outnumbered by those who are very willing and interested to be jabbed, the mayor shared.

Since the vaccination rollout began in March, the city received Sinovac, AstraZeneca, and lately, Johnson and Johnson vaccines from the regional DOH office, and these were readily used to priority groups A1, A2, and A3.

Frontliners belong to A1, senior citizens - A2, and persons with co-morbidities or having existing ailments - A3, and thus far the city’s vaccination team hit more than 17% of the over 47,000 population as vaccination target, the mayor reported.

He said there is a plan to conduct a house-to-house vaccination to reach out to more seniors especially those living in the mountain barangays who may be unable to travel to the vaccination center at the city gym and at the SJC compound. (LDL/MMP/PIA-8/Southern Leyte)