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City officials requested that individuals who are scheduled to take the board and bar examinations in the city should be prioritized in the ongoing roll out of the government’s mass vaccination program in the city for them to be spared from additional expenses in having to avail of tests prior to taking the said examinations.
Under Resolution No. 466, series of 2021 signed by Mayor Benjamin B. Magalong, local legislators stated that the individuals taking the aforesaid examinations are at risk of contracting the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) which might also endanger their family members, relatives and close contacts whom they might pass on the virus after possible exposure due to the scheduled face to face conduct of the examinations.
The council noted that the licensure tests such as the board examinations conducted by the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) and the art examinations administered by the Supreme Court © through the Office of the Bar Confidant serve to regulate specific occupations or professions.
The body disclosed that numerous examinations that were earlier scheduled to be conducted in various parts of the country were postponed and rescheduled to later dates due to the continuous surge in the COVID-19 cases which has been triggered by the more infectious Delta variant over the past several months.
According to the legislators, given the limited global supply of vaccines against the deadly virus, the interagency task force for the management of emerging infectious diseases adopted the prioritization framework and criteria of the interim national immunization technical advisory group in allocating vaccines to contain the spread of the virus in the different parts of the country and prevent the health care system from being compromised and the frontliners from being unduly stressed.
The framework prioritizes frontline workers in the national and local health facilities and further placed vulnerable groups like senior citizens and those individuals with co-morbidities as the next priority for vaccination and provides for sub-prioritization based on risk exposure or mortality risk and the process flow that citizens will undergo in the vaccination program.
The council claimed that most of the board and bar examinees are among the least priority off the Filipino population, thus, the need for them to be considered as among the priorities for vaccination, especially when the schedule of their examination will be in the next several months, so that they will no longer have to append additional amounts just to avail of a negative swab or antigen test before taking the said examinations.
Earlier, President Rodrigo Duterte approved the recommendation of the inter-agency task force for the vaccination of the general population starting the middle of the month to help in speeding up the realization of population protection and eventual herd immunity.
At present, the local government is aggressively rolling out the government’s mass vaccination program with the available vaccines from the national government and the ones that were purchased by the city to help in gradually and safely allowing the revival of the local economy. By Dexter A. See