Nearly 70 percent of the employees of the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) are now fully vaccinated against the new coronavirus disease (Covid-19) as a result of an intensified vaccination program implemented by the agency in the last five months.
SBMA Chairman and Administrator Wilma T. Eisma said on Thursday that of the 2,238 employees in the SBMA rolls, a total of 1,561 or 69.75% already received their full dose of Covid-19 vaccines, while 513 or 22.92% have already had their first vaccine shots.
This leaves just 164 or 7.33% of the total SBMA manpower personnel yet unvaccinated.
Eisma said, however, that more agency workers are expected to be fully-vaccinated in the next two months as more vaccine allocations come in from the Department of Health (DOH) and private sources.
“Right now, we’re looking forward to a full-vaccination rate of more than 90 percent — which is the new target for herd immunity — for our employees by December,” Eisma said.
“We’re doing everything that we can to get all our employees inoculated because, like the rest of the workforce in the Subic Bay Freeport, we need to get back to our normal work schedules to get the local economy going again,” she added.
According to SBMA records, 11 of the 47 departments and offices in the agency already have 100% vaccination rate as of October 12. These are the Office of the Chairman and Administrator, Board Secretariat and Office of the Directors, Office of the Deputy Administrator (ODA) for Health and Safety, Public Health and Safety Department, Office of the Senior Deputy Administrator (OSDA) for Support Services, ODA for Administration, ODA for Finance, Management Information Systems Office, Legal Department, ODA for Port Operations, and the Trade Facilitation and Compliance Department.
Meanwhile, 12 other offices have a full-vaccination rate of from 80 to 96 percent, while eight more rank in the 70’s.
Some health experts had earlier increased the vaccination rate to achieve the so-called ‘herd immunity” from the initial 70% to 90% because new Covid-19 variants have reportedly lowered the efficacy of available vaccines.
The SBMA last month expanded the coverage of its vaccination drive to include more workers in locator-companies in the Subic Bay Freeport to sustain productivity in this special economic and free port zone.
Eisma said that under the SBMA-DOH vaccine rollout, the SBMA Public Health and Safety Department continues to vaccinate qualified recipients in the A1 to A4 categories of the government’s priority list.