The Department of Health (DOH) does not see any violation in the vaccination of Chinese nationals in Pasay City because they are said to be permanent residents of the country under the rules of the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF).
Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said they have already spoken to Pasay City Government officials who said the foreigners could present documents proving that they are permanent residents of the country.
They are on the priority list due to being senior citizens, and others have comorbidities.
The local government also first insisted that the foreigners went through the proper process, contrary to what some say on social media that foreigners were put in the queue.
‘” Yan naman po ay naisaad na sa isang IATF resolution na sinasabi na kung ikaw ay permanent resident dito, bagama’t ikaw ay foreigner, you will not be treated differently from among Filipino nationals,” said Vergeire.
Because a foreigner lives here, they can interact with Filipinos, so they also need to be vaccinated, Vergeire insisted.
It is also allowed under DOH department memorandum No. 2021-0157 dated March 30, 2021.
“It is further clarified that all Filipinos including overseas Filipino workers and other groups with legal residency status in the Philippines (i.e., foreign nationals, diplomats) shall be included in the priority group appropriate to their circumstance,” said the memorandum.
Vaccination of permanent Chinese residents okay: DOH
Last week, Palace spokesperson Harry Roque said that they had not received reports of Chinese national vaccinated against COVID-19.
“Wala po kaming nalalaman tunkol dito sa mga Chinese nationals na na-vaccinate,” said Palace spokesman Harry Roque.
“Posible naman po, baka mga Filipino-Chinese ‘yan,” he said in a televised public briefing.
(We do not know anything about these Chinese nationals who were vaccinated. It’s possible. Maybe these are Filipino-Chinese.)
In a media statement, Calixto-Rubiano said the vaccinated Chinese are legitimate residents of Pasay City and belong to the priority categories of senior citizens (A2) or persons with comorbidities (A3).
He said they went through the appropriate process to show a barangay certificate and medical certificate to receive the vaccine.