Gov't may consider 'transportation bubble' when more people get vaccinated vs COVID-19

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 19 2021 06:02 PM | Updated as of Aug 19 2021 06:14 PM

An operative from the Inter-Agency Council for Traffic inspect a bus along Macapagal Boulevard
An operative from the Inter-Agency Council for Traffic inspect a bus along Macapagal Boulevard on Tuesday. ABS-CBN News

MANILA— The government might consider setting up a "transportation bubble" to keep passengers safe against COVID-19 when more people get vaccinated in Metro Manila, Malacañang said on Thursday. 

The capital region has yet to vaccinate half of its 13 million people to achieve population protection, said Palace spokesman Harry Roque. 

"We appreciate the suggestion po, pero siguro pag-usapan natin iyan kapag mayroon na po tayong population protection," he said in a press briefing.

(We appreciate the suggestion, but perhaps let's talk about that when we have population protection.)

"Sandali na lang naman po ito, siguro after this week ay maaabot na ng Metro Manila ang 50 percent at mayroon na tayong kahit papaanong population protection. We can then explore how we can resume normal life given na kalahati ng populasyon ng Metro Manila ay bakunado na. But point well taken po," added the official.

(This will take just a bit more time, perhaps after this week Metro Manila will reach 50 percent and we'll have even a bit of population protection. We can then explore how we can resume normal life, given that half of the Metro Manila population is already vaccinated.)

Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion suggested designating some buses for the exclusive use of fully vaccinated individuals to keep them "protected within a transportation bubble, so there are no gaps as they travel from their homes to workplaces, and vice-versa." 

"Currently, when fully-vaccinated individuals leave their homes, they commute alongside unvaccinated passengers, hence letting their guard down," he said in a Philippine Star opinion column. 

"With the regular buses, both the unvaccinated and the vaccinated are a risk to each other. We do not want a scenario wherein we just simply let the vaccinated individuals interact with those who are unvaccinated given the current threat from the Delta variant." 

Video courtesy of PTV