Gov’t to decide on mandatory COVID-19 jabs after 3-day vaccination drive

The Palace said Tuesday that the government had yet to decide on mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations as this depended on the turnout during this week’s three-day nationwide vaccination drive.

“We still continue to discuss that (mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations) inside the [Inter-Agency Task Force],” said acting presidential spokesperson Karlo Nograles.

“As long as we see the consistent, significant turnout during massive vaccinations, where we are seeing one million doses administered in a day and as much as three million doses administered per day due to three day massive vaccination rollout, then, hopefully, there might not be a need for that if a lot of people will get vaccinated.”

However, Nograles added that the new Omicron coronavirus variant was another factor that could influence this decision.

“So, at the end of the day, as President Rodrigo Duterte said, we will balance the police power of the state, and the public health and safety of our people. We continue to weigh the options,” said the President’s spokesperson.

Furthermore, according to Nograles, Congress could also take it upon itself to pass a law for mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations.

“There needs to be a law for that, and there will be mandatory enforcement if Congress will pass a law and the President signs it. It is up to Congress to pass a law if they feel the need to make it mandatory,” Nograles explained.

At least 2.5 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine were administered during Day One of the three-day nationwide COVID-19 drive. The government had sought to administer three million doses per day for three consecutive days.

The 2.5 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines administered on November 29, however, are 2.5 times more than the country’s daily average. — DVM, GMA News

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