Pneumonia vaccine indirectly strengthens body vs COVID-19, says expert

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MANILA, (Mabuhay) — Vaccination against pneumonia helps the body indirectly strengthen itself against the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), according to a pediatric specialist.

Dr. John Ong urged the Philippines to continue using the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV) 13 as the country grapples with the coronavirus menace.

“If you are inoculated for pneumonia, you are indirectly strengthening your body’s defenses against COVID-19,” he said in a radio interview.

Pneumonia is one of the potential complications of COVID-19.

Ong said the Philippines must stick to the broad-spectrum PCV 13, which combats 13 pneumococcal strains, rather than the PCV 10 because it is “more cost-effective.”

He also cited a Department of Health study showing that, with PCV 13, the country had “fewer cases of pneumonia, we had fewer deaths.”

“So, our experience shows that it’s still better if we use the more effective, rather than the cheaper, vaccine,” Ong added.

A health expert from El Salvador earlier urged the Philippines to continue using the “superior” PCV13.  (MNS)

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