Salceda urges DOH to drop raffles, give vaccination allowance instead


INSTEAD of launching a raffle for those who will get vaccinated, the chairman of the House Committee on Ways and Means on Sunday said the government should provide vaccination allowance or incentive for those who have to skip a work day just to get jabbed.

Albay Rep. Joey Sarte Saleda issued the statement in response to the announcement by the Department of Health they will raffle off recipients of vaccines purportedly to encourage more Filipinos to get inoculated against Covid-19.

But Salceda said “the problem is not the lack of some probability of winning a big prize.”

“The problem is, for many, they have to skip a work day just to get jabbed. For the average wage worker, that will cost them the day’s pay,” the lawmaker added.

Earlier this year, Salceda said he already proposed that the government give a day’s worth of minimum wage as a vaccine incentive.

“There are places where that’s being done already, like Davao City,” Salceda added.

“The point is, you compensate for the trouble. Even with a raffle, for many working class Filipinos, foregoing a day’s wages is too much,” Salceda said.

Vaccine supplies

SALCEDA, meanwhile, also said that government needs to boost Bicol’s vaccine supply.

“Region-wide, we are just at 10 percent of the population vaccinated. That’s among the lowest in the country. We need help,” Salceda said.

The lawmaker also warned that “the lack of vaccines could threaten the strength of our response.”

“Look at the example of Vietnam. They were among the best in the world for minimum health standards and non-pharmaceutical interventions. They are now facing among the world’s worst surges because of a lack of vaccines, not because of neglect on the part of their government,” Salceda said.

The lawmaker added that “the point is, get more vaccines in regions that are under-vaccinated, because here, we are aching for vaccines.”

“In places that are starting to get saturated, of course vaccine demand will plateau,” Salceda said. “I assure you, get more vaccines in Bicol and you will see faster vaccination.”

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