In a statement on Friday, November 12, Malacañang Palace spokesperson Harry Roque announced that vaccination of employees in areas with sufficient COVID-19 vaccines will be required starting December 1. “In areas where there are sufficient supplies of COVID-19 vaccines, COVID-19 vaccination of eligible employees tasked to do on-site work shall be required by all establishments and employers,” he said.
He added that those in public transportation services, including those in road, rail, aviation, and maritime industries, shall be required to get inoculated so they may continue operations. (Read: PSA: COVID-19 Vaccination Guidelines For Minors)
The rule applies to both the public and private sector. But of course, there are guidelines for employers and establishments, so that there is proper implementation. Here they are.
- While vaccination will become a requirement for reporting physically to work, unvaccinated employees cannot be terminated from service. Instead, they will be required to undergo regular RT-PCR or antigen testing at their own expense.
- Public and private establishments may refuse individuals who are unvaccinated or only partially unvaccinated (vaccinated with one dose out of two), despite them being eligible for inoculation.
- Frontline workers and emergency services may continue working on-site regardless of vaccination status.
- LGUs are enjoined to issue ordinances or orders “providing incentives for fully vaccinated individuals” to encourage vaccination, and for business establishments to require proof of vaccination before patrons can “qualify for certain activities”.
- Workers and employees who are inoculated during work hours must not be considered absent, given that they provide proof of schedule for vaccination. (Read: Kalookan Diocese Opens Churches For Vaccination Drives)
- Only a medical certificate issued from a government medical institution, or birth certificate, may be considered as valid proof for ineligibility for vaccination.
- Government agencies are enjoined “to implement measures prioritizing fully vaccinated individuals availing of government services.”