IATF adds more sectors eligible for COVID-19 vaccine as economic frontliners

The government coronavirus task force has approved the inclusion of more sectors eligible to get COVID-19 shots as economic frontliners under the A4 priority goup, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said on Friday, April 16.

Among those added to the list are basic education frontliners, members of the diplomatic community and Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) personnel manning consular services, Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) employees monitoring infrastructure projects, cable and internet service providers, public utility workers, and media workers.

The earlier list of economic frontliners approved by the IATF had 13 sectors. Here's the complete list of economic frontliners included in the latest A4 priority group for COVID-19 vaccination:

  • Commuter transport (land, air, and sea), including logistics
  • Public and private wet and dry market vendors
  • Frontline workers in groceries, supermarkets, delivery services
  • Workers in manufacturing for food, beverage, medical and pharmaceutical products
  • Frontline workers in food retail, including food service delivery
  • Frontline workers in private and government financial services
  • Frontline workers in hotels and accommodation establishments
  • Priests, rabbis, imams, and other religious leaders
  • Security guards/ personnel assigned in offices, agencies, and organizations identified in the list of priority industries/sectors
  • Frontline workers in private and government news media
  • Customer-facing personnel of telecoms, cable and internet service providers, electricity distribution, and water distribution utilities
  • Frontline personnel in basic education and higher education institutions and agencies
  • Overseas Filipino workers, including those scheduled for deployment within two months
  • Frontline workers in law/justice, security, and social protection sectors
  • Frontline government workers engaged in the operations of government transport system, quarantine inspection
  • Worker safety inspection and other COVID-19 response activities
  • Frontline government workers in charge of tax collection, assessment of businesses for incentives, election, national ID, data collection personnel
  • Diplomatic community and DFA personnel in consular operations
  • DPWH personnel in charge of monitoring government infrastructure projects

The inclusion of basic education frontliners addressed earlier calls by lawmakers like Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto who had stressed the importance of innoculating teachers after health workers to  help restore "normalcy" in the education sector.

Socioeconomic Planning Undersecretary Rosemarie Edillon said on Monday, April 12, that the vaccination of the A4 group could start by May at the earliest, and could also be moved to June or July, depending on the erratic global supply and the availability of vaccines in the Philippines.

The Department of Health will come up with the final guidelines on the vaccination of the A4 group. – Rappler.com

Read Rappler's series of explainers on the Duterte government's vaccine program below:

Bonz Magsambol

Bonz Magsambol is a multimedia reporter for Rappler, covering health, education, and social welfare. He first joined Rappler as a social media producer in 2016.

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