The brand of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) vaccine to be administered on recipients will be disclosed prior to inoculation, the Department of Health (DOH) said Thursday.

The clarification was made by the DOH a day after it announced that vaccination sites will no longer announce what brands are available on a specific date.

“‘Pag sinabi naman na hindi natin ia-announce ‘yung brand, we are not going to announce the brand as of [that] day,” Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said during an interview over GMA.

“Siyempre bago ‘yan ibakuna sa inyo, sasabihin ano ‘yung ibibigay,” Dr. Gloria Balboa, DOH regional director for Metro Manila, added in an interview over dzBB.

The decision was made after people crowded the vaccination sites in Parañaque and Manila earlier this week upon learning Pfizer vaccines were available. 

Available vaccine brands will no longer be announced publicly beforehand. Those who will refuse vaccination because they prefer a different brand will have to go back to the end of the line, the Health Department said.

The DOH said “not announcing what brand will be available in inoculation sites will not take away the right of individuals to be informed of the vaccine they are taking.”

“The vaccination process entails on-site vaccine education, proper recording using vaccination cards, and monitoring for Adverse Events Following Immunization,” DOH added.

“All of these vaccines that are in the country are going to protect them,” Vergeire stressed. “Wala naman pong isang mas magaling o magiging mas epektibo para sa kanila.”

Vergeire added that the DOH is conducting a “rigorous” information campaign to address the doubts about the vaccines, the secretary added.

As of May 18, the Philippines has vaccinated over 2.5 million people, still far from the government’s target of inoculating 50 million to 70 million people this year to reach herd immunity. Ronald Espartinez