ANAKALUSUGAN party-list Rep. Mike Defensor on Thursday urged the Department of Health (DoH) and local government units (LGUs) to consider granting volunteer vaccinators an allowance of at least P1,000 a day.
“It’s not enough compensation, but it could cover the volunteer’s transportation, snacks and lunch, and perhaps leave him with change good for two to three kilos of well-milled rice,” Defensor said.
Defensor added that many of the volunteer nurses are unemployed or waiting to be deployed abroad, while most doctor-volunteers are new practitioners who are still struggling and building their career.
“Vaccination duty will be a source of income for those who are jobless or waiting for deployment, and an additional earning for young doctors, if they are given an allowance,” Defensor said.
Defensor added that P1,000 a day would approximate the hiring salary of a government nurse, which is about P33,000 a month.
Defensor pointed out that the grant of an allowance would entice many nurses, doctors and other health professionals to volunteer for vaccination duty.
“We need more volunteers to ramp up the rollout of vaccines, which has been slowed down by admissions of lapses or breaches of vaccination protocols, which could be attributed partly to the fact that many of our vaccinators are overworked,” he stressed.
He said vaccinators who are DOH and LGU personnel and volunteer nurses, doctors and other health professionals should be on duty for no more than eight hours a day.
“Most volunteers have other work to do because they practice their profession. They should be allowed enough rest,” he said.
At the same time, Defensor urged the DOH and vaccination czar Carlito Galvez to ensure that vaccine suppliers provide complete documents every time they ship vaccines to the country.
“The failure of a supplier to complete documents accompanying a shipment means delay in our vaccination program,” he said.