National Task Force against Covid-19 Chief Implementer and vaccine czar Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. urged legislators to enact an indemnification law that would provide assistance to vaccine recipients who develop adverse effects after inoculation.
“This law is very needed on our COVAX donation of 20 percent of our population and also to ensure the readily available funds for adverse effects of the vaccines,” said Galvez during the continuation of the Senate Committee of the Whole inquiry on the national immunization program on Friday.
Health Secretary Francisco Duque 3rd pointed out that the indemnification law will enable the government to achieve a zero-balance billing for cases with adverse vaccine-related side effects.
Duque said the government will also set up a One Hospital Command for vaccine recipients who would experience such adverse effects.
Senator Joel Villanueva, for his part, suggested that the national government, through the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation, come up with Case Rates for each of the vaccines’ possible adverse effects once the indemnification law has been passed.
To ensure that the vaccines do not fall into the wrong hands, Galvez recommended that they be declared as state assets.
He also called on the Senate to pass a law that would allow local government units to make advance market payments for vaccines for the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).
Galvez emphasized that such legislation is needed as existing laws prohibit the government from making any advance payments for products with no indicative delivery dates.
Likewise, the vaccine czar requested the Senate to pass a law that would exempt Covid-19 vaccines from taxes and duties.
He noted that these taxes and custom duties might be a cause of delay in the distribution and administration of the vaccines nationwide.
“This [legislative measure] is to preserve the state and efficacy of vaccines during its transport and handover,” said Galvez. SOVEREIGNPH