The Manila City government leads a vaccine awareness initiative through TikTok to help reduce the fear of inoculation among its residents.
In partnership with the video-sharing platform, Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko” Moreno Domagoso challenges his fellow Manileños to educate one another about the benefits of COVID-19 vaccination through the hashtag #VaccineAlamin campaign.
In a livestream via TikTok on February 22, Domagoso recognized the use of the popular mobile application as a tool to help spread information to the public in an engaging way.
“I think it’s more on talking to the people, kaya kami nagpapasalamat sa TikTok, because this is a set of audience, because of its demographics, if we can use this type of outlet, malaking bagay kasi ‘yung tao directly makatatanong samin,” he said.
“Having TikTok nowadays, helps us. People are into it, so why not use it as a form of communication. Sa dami nang binabasa ng mga tao ngayon, sa dami ng pumapasok na impormasyon sa tao ngayon, kailangan maging catchy,” he added.
Domagoso encouraged them to get creative with their TikTok content, whether it be a skit, song or dance video.
“Create a video that will help inform others about #VaccineAlamin Campaign, I will copy it and tag you!” he said.
@thetitotoker##VaccineAlamin ##tiktokchallenge ##newtrend ##trendalert ##philippines ##manila ##bakunamanila ##yorme ##mayoriskomoreno @iskomorenodomagoso♬ BGC Drama Effect – whozmanzzz
Dr. Arnold Pangan, Manila City Health Officer, was also a guest at the conference hosted by transport vlogger James Deakin.
Pangan explained how vaccines work and its benefits to the human body. He emphasized that being inoculated with it does not guarantee full immunity.
“You may still be infected with the COVID-19 virus, tuloy-tuloy pa rin dapat ang ating pag-iingat kahit social distancing, kahit wearing of mask, kasi it’s not a guarantee. Pag nabakunahan ka na, ang maganda doon, you will be protected from having a severe form of COVID-19 infection,” said Pangan.
Health authorities had been struggling to increase the vaccination rate in the Philippines following the Dengvaxia mess in 2017.
Some Filipinos perceived that until now, there’s still a widespread distrust in the national government’s handling of vaccination as a public policy.
In a nationwide survey Pulse Asia released last January, only 32% of the 2,400 respondents are willing to be vaccinated should a brand be made available in the country.
The 47% rejected the idea of receiving a vaccine and the rest of the 21% were undecided.
While the public is hesitant with the vaccine, most of them fear getting infected with the highly contagious virus.
In a separate poll conducted in November, Social Weather Stations found that 91% of Filipinos were worried about acquiring the coronavirus which causes COVID-19.