COVID-19 vaccines

Governors, mayors now in A1.5 vaccine priority, after medical workers

Pia Ranada
Governors, mayors now in A1.5 vaccine priority, after medical workers

JAB OF HOPE. Seniors get their first dose of the Astrazeneca vaccine during the night vaccination drive at the Isabelo delos Reyes Elementary School in Tondo, Manila on May 13, 2021.

Rappler

Malacañang says local chiefs deserve to get vaccinated immediately since they play a critical role in enforcing lockdowns, preventing COVID-19 transmissions, and running vaccination drives

The national government has moved governors, mayors, and other local chiefs up the vaccine priority list, placing them in an “A1.5” category, announced Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque on Monday, May 17.

A1.5 means governors and mayors are second in line for vaccination, after the first priority group, the country’s medical workers. They come ahead of senior citizens, who belong to the A2 grouping. Vaccinations of health workers, senior citizens, and persons with comorbidities are now happening simultaneously.

Roque said governors and mayors deserved to be vaccinated already because they are as important to the COVID-19 response as doctors and nurses.

“Mayors and governors implement the prevention, detection, isolation, treatment, and rehabilitation cornerstone of our COVID program. They implement localized lockdowns, they implement vaccinations, they are really instruments in our fight vs COVID-19,” said Roque.

In late-March, President Rodrigo Duterte asked 9 mayors to explain why they had gotten vaccinated at a time when the first batches of vaccines in the country were reserved for medical workers.

Over 2.9 million people in the Philippines have gotten either their first dose or both doses, as of May 15. Of these, 1.2 million health workers out of the country’s total of 1.8 million have received a shot. Over 580,000 senior citizens, some 430,000 persons with comorbities, and nearly 9,000 essential economic frontliners have gotten a jab. – Rappler.com

Pia Ranada

Pia Ranada is a senior reporter for Rappler covering Philippine politics and environmental issues. For tips and story suggestions, email her at pia.ranada@rappler.com.