A mega vaccination drive for overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) and seafarers were among the priority groups for vaccination on Monday held at the Divine Word College of Laoag (DWCL).
With a total of 4,870 doses of single-shot Janssen vaccine allotted to Laoag residents from July 26 to 31, the city government assured there will be enough vaccines in the coming days.
Seafarer Willson Jeff A. Agustin, 26, of Barangay Nangalisan, said he is grateful to the government for granting his urgent request to be vaccinated with Johnson&Johnson’s Janssen vaccine as he is scheduled to join the ship next month.
“I was informed by my shipping company that we will be isolated for two weeks before joining the ship. I’m just so glad that my single-shot vaccine is done to protect myself and others from the virus,” he said after his vaccination at the DWCL.
Like the medical front-liners as well as senior citizens and persons with disabilities, the OFWs and seafarers were included in the priority list of the vaccination program following a request from Filipino seafarer unions to President Rodrigo Duterte to allow sea-based OFWs to be vaccinated with Western-made Covid-19 vaccines.
The seafarers said most international shipping companies prefer Western brands.
The Johnson&Johnson shot is seen to facilitate the Filipinos’ return to work abroad since it is a single-dose vaccine. Others require two doses to be given weeks apart.
In his previous State of the Nation Address, the President vowed to make life easier for OFWs when they secure permits and government documents. (PNA)