MANILA, Philippines—Senator Joel Villanueva on Saturday urged the Inter-Agency Task Force for Emerging Infectious Diseases to set up drive-thru or mega vaccination sites for Mega Manila’s parcel and food delivery workers.
With an app-based structure already available, Villanueva said drivers can use their own phones to register and schedule their vaccine shots.
Villanueva said that the riding community has “the wheels and the apps that could vaccinate thousands of these essential workers in a day.”
“[It is time that they are] rewarded and protected for unselfishly serving as the lifeline to the outside world by people locked down in their homes and communities.”
Villanueva also noted it’s imperative for the couriers, whom he described as essential workers, to be vaccinated soon as their jobs entail them to interact with as many people as possible in any given day thus increasing their exposure.
Vaccination for occupational groups under the private sector, like the one Villanueva proposed for delivery workers, is also allowed under the COVID-19 Vaccination Program Act.
Villanueva added that the government should encourage the different delivery companies to form a consortium “as a kind of a sectoral vaccination program that they themselves will help run.”
“Mungkahi po natin sa IATF na pag-aralan ang pagtatakda ng isang go-to na vaccination site para sa ating mga delivery riders, para makasigurong mababakunahan sila ng maayos,” said Villanueva.
(My recommendation to the IATF is to study the possibility of setting up a go-to vaccination site for our delivery riders so that we can make sure that they are vaccinated properly.)
This proposal, Villanueva added, could also help the government use the 5,155,957 COVID-19 vaccine doses that are in deep need of being dispensed immediately.
“But if our highest so far is 83,000 jabs a day, the one recorded for May 13, and say we increase that to 100,000 a day, it will still take us almost two months to consume this stock. And more are coming,” said Villanueva.
“Delivery riders came to our rescue during the enhanced community quarantine. Now they can help in saving precious vaccines from getting ruined.”