More than a thousand Bureau of Immigration frontliners are set to receive their first dose of COVID-19 vaccines starting April 24 to 25.
According to Commissioner Jaime Morente, they are targeting to inoculate 1,250 immigration personnel with the government-procured CoronaVac, the vaccine from Sinovac Biotech that is administered in two doses in an interval of 28 days.
“We have scheduled vaccination of our eligible employees on a weekend so as not to hamper our daily operations,” Morente said.
Adhering to the priority list given by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases, the bureau will start the vaccination of its employees who are senior citizens and people with co-morbidities.
“The continuous rise of COVID-19 cases accentuates the need to vaccinate our frontliners, especially those belonging in the most vulnerable group such as the seniors and persons with co-morbidities. We want to assure their safety from the threat of the deadly virus,” Morente said.
He then explained that a pre-screening would be conducted on the medical history of the officers to determine those eligible to receive the vaccine.
Meanwhile, Deputy Commissioner and Chairperson of the COVID-19 Taskforce Aldwin Alegre said despite the vaccine rollout among immigration officers, they would continue to implement basic health protocols such as the wearing of face masks and face shields, maintaining physical distancing and the checking of body temperatures.
“BI is a frontline agency and our employees at the ports, as well as in our numerous offices nationwide, have remained open to provide service. Our frontliners are one of the most exposed and have a high risk in contracting the highly transmissible virus. As such, we will continue to make sure that all health protocols are being followed,” Alegre said.
He expressed hope on the positive effect of the vaccine rollout towards public service.
“I am confident that as our officers get their jabs, we will be able to carry out our mandate better and with less worry,” Alegre said.