Philippines arranges COVID-19 vaccines for 5,000 Bohol tourism workers

The vaccination scheme will prepare frontline workers for a bigger reopening of tourism  

Bohol’s local procedures were always aimed at keeping locals safe while remaining welcome to tourism. Source: RastoSK/Shutterstock

According to CNN Philippines, the Department of Tourism said it is planning to allocate around 10,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines to 5,000 Bohol tourism workers.  

Bernadette Romulo-Puyat, tourism secretary, said during a virtual meeting, “I am delighted to bring the good news that vaccine czars Sec. Carlito Galvez and Sec. Vince Dizon have approved our request for additional vaccines for Bohol.”  

She added that with this vaccination plan, the industry’s front liners will be prepared for the country’s extended reopening of tourism.  

The DOT mentioned that tourism workers will be given Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine.  

In the meantime, Bohol Governor Arthur Yap said workers from DOT-accredited establishments with certificates of authority to operate and the province’s tourism seal of excellence are to be prioritised in the early vaccination program.  

“Bohol draws its income from remittances abroad and the services sector, and both sources have been impacted during this crisis,” said Yap. “The promise of more vaccines arriving sooner than later is indeed great news so we can protect not only our residents but assure visitors that we are taking measures to assure their safety as well.”  

As tourism workers become increasingly vaccinated, Puyat revealed optimism in creating a travel bubble between Bohol and other destinations in Asia in the near future.  

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“There are no standard procedures in confronting this pandemic,” the tourism chief said. “We have to find innovative measures for the nation to recover.” 

Puyat also mentioned that Bohol’s local procedures were always aimed at keeping locals safe while remaining welcome to tourism. Hence, it makes the province a prospective candidate for when direct travel bubbles with select regional destinations open.  

Bohol, known for its Chocolate Hills, old stone churches, white-sand beaches, and tarsiers, opened its doors last year for domestic travelers and residents if they have a negative RT-PCR test result and have an accommodation in a DOT-accredited hotel with the province’s tourism seal of excellence.