No more mention of Covid vaccine brands

·2 min read

FOR a fast and efficient vaccination rollout, Cebu business leaders agree it is best to refrain from announcing the vaccine brand as all Covid-19 vaccines made available in the country have been screened for safety anyway.

Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI) president Felix Taguiam said as long as the individual to be vaccinated is honest with his medical declaration, the doctors can decide well on whether he could or could not be vaccinated.

“I am sure the Department of Health is very careful with the proper screening process of each individual on what comorbidity they have,” Taguiam said.

For his part, Mandaue Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) president Steven Yu said considering the vaccination capacity versus the breakdown of vaccines arriving per brand, it is best not to announce what brand is available.

“Other countries do not announce what brand will be used. This is to attain fast, effective and efficient vaccination because we are after attaining herd immunity by yearend,” Yu said.

“I don’t think our local economy and businesses can afford more delays. Factually, all brands being used now are okay. We don’t need to be choosy with brands. What we need to do is to get vaccinated as early as possible,” he added.

BPO as A4 priority

Meanwhile, Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez welcomed Friday, May 21, 2021, the Inter-Agency Task Force’s (IATF) recommendation to include the business process outsourcing (BPO) industry’s frontline workers in the Priority Group A4 for Covid-19 vaccination.

In a statement, Lopez cited the BPO’s “huge contribution” in the country’s export revenues, saying it reached close to $30 billion a year, “which is bigger than overseas Filipino workers’ (OFW) remittances.”

“The Philippines has become among the biggest BPO players in the world, generating around 1.32 million direct employment and four million indirect employment,” he said.

“This is the only sector that didn’t lay off workers and even continued to hire during this pandemic. This is helping the economy in its recovery efforts, in saving jobs, and contributions to dollar revenue generation. That, in turn, is helping solidify further the economic fundamentals of the country and stable credit rating for the country,” Lopez added.

The IATF, under Resolution 116 released on Friday, recommended to the National Immunization Technical Advisory Group (iNitag) the inclusion of BPO frontline employees under Priority Group A4.

The inclusion was endorsed by the Department of Trade the Industry for IATF’s approval.

The A4 group generally refers to frontline personnel in essential sectors, including uniformed personnel. (LMY)

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