MANILA - Tourism frontliners, including those manning isolation facilities and quarantine hotels, are now part of the A1 priority group for the COVID-19 vaccination program, the Department of Tourism said Friday.
The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of the Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) approved the inclusion of tourism frontliners in the A1 priority list in a letter to Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat dated May 15, the DOT said in a statement.
The A1 priority group is intended for medical frontliners and is the first group to be vaccinated under the government's inoculation drive.
Puyat said the decision would greatly benefit the tourism industry.
"It is high time that we protect our tourism frontliners knowing that they are risking their lives each time they show up in the designated quarantine and isolation hotels," she said.
"This move shows the government's commitment to protect them. Not only will this decision help ensure the survival of the tourism industry; this will also hasten the country’s economic recovery," she added.
Some 2,507 employees of quarantine hotels nationwide have been vaccinated against COVID-19, the DOT said.
The country's coronavirus task force also earlier approved the inclusion of Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) workers in the A4 group, citing their contribution to the economy.