MALAY, Boracay–The key to successfully open Boracay to both the local and international tourists is to vaccinate all the industry players on the islands against the coronavirus disease.
Aklan Governor Florencio Miraflores requested about 40,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccines from the National Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) last month for its entire tourism sector, he said in a press conference.
He noted that the advance request of vaccines is for the tourism sector to once again move as it contributes significantly to the national economy.
Miraflores added that the tourism sector manages to contribute a huge amount of the country's gross domestic product, with a total of PHP 56 billion.
“To revive the economy, it is very important that the tourism sector should also be revived,” Miraflores said at the live press conference that streamed at Kalibo Cables TV Network's Facebook page.
On the other hand, the health sector and the elderly are the main priority of vaccines. After they have all been inoculated then it will go directly to the other sectors.
“But we are hoping that the 40,000 doses that we requested for Boracay will be prioritized also by the national government,” he said.
Miraflores is confident that the Aklan Government will give Boracay the priority once the tourism sector is included in the list of recipients.
“Once they get vaccinated in Boracay, we will open up Boracay to the world, not only to domestic tourists but to the rest of the world,” he said.
Yesterday, Aklan already received 2,420 doses of the Sinovac vaccine from the Department of Health Visayas Center for Health Development.
A portion of the vaccine will be given to the Dr. Rafael S. Tumbukon Memorial Hospital, with a total of 920 doses.
Dr. Myla Bernabe, the representative of the Department of Health Visayas Center for Health Development said these vaccines cover all the health workers from the province's district, municipal and private hospitals. They added that the second batch of doses will arrive probably next month or after 28 days.
“We are assured that all our hospital health workers will be protected by the vaccine. As mentioned, AstraZeneca is also coming but is limited to the senior citizen health workers,” he said.
Also, he noted that according to the experts, that the Sinovac vaccine is tested to be 50 percent effective when it comes to mild cases, 57 for those with moderate cases and 100 percent for severe cases.
Source: PNA - Philippine News Agency