Vaccination: A Concerted Effort to Save Lives, Livelihoods
Recently, I had interviews with Alvin Elchico, Doris Bigornia, and Sherrie Ann Torres on DZMM TeleRadyo, where we discussed the importance of vaccine education and about the recent efforts from the private sector to procure the vaccines and plans for the administration of the vaccines. We also discussed why it is vital that our people should be vaccinated, even as some continue to refuse, as all these efforts will be wasted, along with those that have chosen to take the vaccine not just for themselves, but also for the country. Here are some highlights from those interviews:
On vaccine arrival and confidence, with Doris and Alvin
Alvin: Siguro ang unang itanong natin, ang daming naiinip, ang mga sales lady, tindera, mga security guard, kami-kaming mga reporters, kailan ang vaccination?
Joey: Well, depende kung sa LGU kayo and kung darating yung AstraZeneca itong buwan ng Mayo from COVAX, then that’s good, you’ll be able to take AstraZeneca. Sinovac naman, andyan pa rin yan, tuloy-tuloy ang Sinovac. Dito naman sa private sector with AstraZeneca, very clear na ang arrival nito ay first week of June, at may allocation na ang private sector. Nag-meeting din kami with Congress noong isang araw and we explained the whole private sector vaccination plan, they supported us and gave us free will – greater flexibility for the private sector.
Doris: Sir, yung sinabi nyong vaccination confidence, sabi nyo tumataas na, nasa 100 percent na po ba tayo?
Joey: No, palagay ko hindi pa. Pero sa tingin ko, mga 70 to 80 percent sa Go Negosyo. Kanina may programa kami sa Facebook na lahat ng mga sari-sari store owner at mga tricycle driver, tinatanong namin kung kukunin nila ang bakuna, sabi nila, oo, gusto nilang kunin. Kung ganyan ang mangyayari, maganda yan. At yung mga kompanya katulad ng CDO, may video sila on vaccine testimonials, so ang hinihingi namin sa lahat ng kompanya, gayahin ang video na ginawa ng CDO.
Ang Go Negosyo, ila-launch ang Let’s Go Bakuna this Friday, April 30, in time for Labor Day. The whole private sector will go with this campaign. I think Sec. Galvez and the private sector have done a good job in getting access. Now, let’s pray na lang na itong COVAX at itong Covaxin ay walang delay kasi medyo malubha ang nangyayari sa India at ngayon, kailangan kumuha ng permit bago sila mag-export ng vaccine para sa bansa natin.
On the need for vaccination, with Sherrie and Alvin
Alvin: Tungkol po sa pakiusap niyo sa DOLE, mayroon po kayong pakiusap sa kanila na gawing mandatory ang vaccination?
Joey: No. I had a conversation with Sec. Bello and I was telling him, sana Sec. we can try to have a stronger memo to our employees that they have to take the vaccines seriously. Kasi yung vaccines, maraming darating this coming June. We can’t really see the picture hanggang dumating lahat ang vaccines, pero kung mangyari at yung turnout natin ay masyadong mababa, I don’t think that we would be able to win this battle against COVID-19.
Kung medyo matumal ang pagkuha ng mga bakuna, may problema tayo. Kaya I was telling Sec. Bello, baka you can join our campaign, maybe in our video, and encourage the employees of the private sector. In fact, we invited him to our show this Friday, during our launch of the Let’s GO Bakuna.
Alvin: So, what exactly do you want from the Department of Labor para maparami ang magpapabakunang manggagawa?
Joey: Actually, may House Bill 9252 na na-file with Rep. Barzaga, he’s seeking for COVID-19 vaccination to be mandatory in the Philippines. Kami, we don’t need to get to that point yet, pero pag ang resulta pagdating ng mga bakuna natin ay medyo mahina, kaunti lang ang tumanggap ng bakuna, then I think we have to really take this seriously or else, masasayang ang binili ng mga private sector.
So, hindi lang sapat yung kampanya namin, sana sumali dito ang Department of Labor to enjoin and encourage our employees to take the vaccines kasi ito na ang solusyon natin dito upang mabuksan ang ekonomiya natin na ngayon ay nasa MECQ. Kung gusto natin to move into MGCQ, kailangang makita na bumabagsak ang infection levels and that can only happen if we have the right quantity of vaccines and we have close to 80 percent of our employees taking the vaccines.
Sherrie: Nakikita niyo ba na yung mga company from your end, can also initiate an educational campaign para na rin ma-encourage niyo ang mga empleyado niyo na sila talaga ay mag-take part, makiisa dito sa pagpapabakuna.
Joey: Alam niyo, nangyayari na ngayon yan, example ay ang CDO na nag-launch ng sariling video campaign. We are doing our best, getting medical advisers to guide and advise the people, sometimes it’s a struggle, pero what else can we do. That’s why I hope it doesn’t come to this point that it is legislated. I think we can avoid it if we really all work, that’s why we are going to launch the Let’s GO Bakuna in time for Labor Day.
Why Labor Day? Because the very purpose of this program is for our employment to go up and this can only be attained by really opening up the economy, and the only way to open the economy is to bring down the level of infection. What is the best solution, the vaccines. Social distancing and wearing of face masks are just buying us time and keeping us afloat, but in the end, the ultimate solution is getting vaccinated.
Look at what happened to certain states in America, talagang bumagsak yung infection level nung tumaas yung vaccination nila, also like Singapore and other countries. So tayo, the same formula, we have to work and there is no other way.
Alvin: So kailan yon? Anong pangalan ng programa ulit?
Joey: Let’s Go Bakuna! Originally for May 1, Labor Day, but May 1 is Saturday, so we will launch it on April 30, Friday.
We are inviting everyone to watch the launch of Let’s GO Bakuna live at Go Negosyo’s Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/gonegosyoofficial), April 30, 6:00-7:30 p.m.