DOH, NITAG urged: Give private sector ‘flexibility’ in A4 priority vaccination

(FILE) Public school teachers receive sinovac jab during CoVid19 vaccination effort of the City Government of Manila on Tuesday, April 13, at Palacio de Maynila, Roxas Boulevard.-INQUIRER/GRIG C. MONTEGRANDE

MANILA, Philippines — Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion appealed to the Department of Health (DOH) and to the National Immunization Technical Advisory Group (NITAG) to give the private sector “flexibility” in its vaccination rollout for those in the A4 priority (frontline personnel in essential sectors, including uniformed personnel) category.

During the joint hearing of the House committee on health and the committee on trade and industry, many of the private companies that have procured COVID-19 vaccines are employing workers belonging to different sub-groups of the A4 priority group.

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“What we want to appeal to DOH and NITAG is to give the private sector the flexibility because if you look at the industries that I’ve presented that purchased these vaccines, there are so many industries who have different positions and we will list them all but [we call for] flexibility in who comes first,” Concepcion said.

“When you have a company coming and sending employees, sometimes these people will not be there present at that certain time but since they are all belonging in that particular company, we should just allow to just inoculate all of those in that list of A4,” he added.

Currently, there are at least 13 sub-groups within the A4 priority group. Those in A4.1, such as those in commuter transport fields, are in the highest hierarchy, followed by A4.2 (frontline government workers in justice, security, transport, and social protection sectors), A4.3 (public and private wet and dry market vendors; frontline workers in grocery, supermarkets; delivery services) and so on.

According to Concepcion’s presentation, 751 micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) and 253 large enterprises have so far procured COVID-19 vaccines.

/MUF

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