QC warns of fines, jail time vs violators of COVID-19 vaccination rules

Robie de Guzman   •   August 5, 2021   •   209

People engaging in illegal acts relating to COVID-19 vaccination and those violating the inoculation rules will face fines and jail time, the Quezon City government warned Thursday.

In a statement, the city government said the policy will be implemented after Mayor Joy Belmonte received reports that some individuals are showing up at vaccination sites with fake notification messages from the city government.

The supposed text or email messages were purportedly sent to them, but their names were not on the list of confirmed vaccine recipients for the day when verified, it added.

“This should serve as a warning to those who want to take advantage of the city’s vaccination program through illegal means,” Belmonte said.

“We won’t take your illegal acts sitting down and we will go after you with the full force of the law,” she added.

The city government also received reports about individuals engaging in fraudulent sale of COVID-19 vaccines and falsification of vaccination cards.

To address this, Belmonte approved Ordinance No. SP-3032, S-2021, to thwart any illegal acts relating to the government’s vaccination program.

Under the ordinance, counterfeiting, forging, altering or imitating a vaccine card or any information, signature, seal or feature on the same are prohibited.

The policy also prohibits the following acts:

  • Misrepresenting any information requested by authorities in relation to vaccination, including the information indicated in the vaccine card, for purposes of obtaining undue benefits or privileges.
  • Sale, advertisement, distribution, solicitation, or administration of COVID-19 vaccines for profit and commercial purposes without any authorization or permit issued by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
  • Purchasing COVID-19 vaccines, whether from a private individual or a government official/employee, without any authority, issued by the FDA.
  • Sale, advertisement, distribution, solicitation, or administration of fake or adulterated COVID-19 vaccines.
  • Sale of COVID-19 vaccine slot/s originally reserved by the person applying for the same to others for the purpose of substituting someone other than the original and supposed applicant.
  • Purchasing COVID-19 vaccine slot/s, whether from a private individual or a government official/employee.
  • Misrepresentation of vaccine status for purposes of fraud or deceit, including a fully vaccinated person pretending to be unvaccinated for purposes of receiving additional inoculations.
  • Commission of any other deceit or fraud in relation to the government’s COVID-19 vaccination program.

The city government said violators will face a fine of P5,000 or imprisonment of not less than one month but not more than six months, or both at the discretion of the proper court.

“If the offense is committed by a firm, partnership, corporation or other juridical entity, the chief executive officer, president, general manager or such other officer in charge will be held liable,” it said.

“Aside from this, violators may also be charged for violation of Republic Act No. 9771 or the Food and Drug Administration Act of 1991, the Revised Penal Code and other applicable laws,” it added.

The Quezon City government said it continues to implement a no walk-in policy in the local vaccination program.

 

Quezon City gov’t looking into possible causes of COVID-19 spread in 2 convents

Robie de Guzman   •   September 16, 2021

The Quezon City Epidemiology and Disease Surveillance Unit (CESU) is currently looking into the possible causes of COVID-19 outbreak in two convents in the city, the local government said Thursday.

In a statement, the city government said massive contact tracing efforts are underway to contain the further transmission of the virus.

A total of 114 individuals, including 64 nuns and 50 staff members, tested positive for COVID-19 at the Religious of the Virgin Mary (RVM) in Cubao.

At the Convent of the Holy Spirit, 22 individuals were confirmed to have caught the virus, including 13 nuns and 9 staff members.

The city government said both facilities have been placed under lockdown.

CESU chief Dr. Rolando Cruz said they became aware of the situation after the cases were recorded in the surveillance data reported by a testing laboratory.

“Hindi po tayo ang nag-swab sa kanila. Nagpa-test po sila sa iba at nang lumabas na ang resulta sa laboratory, na-record ito sa surveillance data,” he said in the same statement.

“Now, our team is conducting an investigation and intensive contact tracing to get more details about the matter,” he added.

Cruz said part of the ongoing investigation is to determine if any of the positive individuals had any close contact with anyone outside of their facility.

Initial investigation revealed that a nun at the Convent of Holy Spirit passed away due to COVID-19 in early September. A physical therapist in the facility was reportedly exposed to the patient.

Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte earlier ordered the CESU to conduct active surveillance of closed settings in the city such as nursing homes and convents after 122 people, including 99 children, in an orphanage tested positive for COVID-19.

Quezon City eyes vaccinating over 267K minors vs COVID-19

Robie de Guzman   •   September 15, 2021

The Quezon City government on Wednesday said it is now preparing for the registration and inoculation of the younger population against COVID-19.

In a press statement, the city government said it is looking to vaccinate around 267,000 students aged 12 to 17 when it starts the rollout of the vaccination for minors.

The local government said its QC Task Force Vax to Normal is currently working with public and private schools to determine the number of currently enrolled students aged 12-17 years.

“We are closely working with our private and public schools because the strategy now is to put up sites in their campuses and school grounds,” QC Task Force Vax to Normal Co-chair Joseph Juico said.

As for the out-of-school youth, homeschooled and students enrolled outside the city, Juico said the task force is coordinating with barangay officials for proper enlisting.

The online booking system developed by the city will also be activated to schedule their inoculation once the vaccines for children become available.

This data will then be used as a basis for the allocation and registration of this age group for the vaccines, it added.

Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte said the vaccination of minors may be implemented soon as the city already inoculated around 80 percent of its eligible population.

“It is now time to shift our attention to minors because they are also vulnerable to the virus. Moreover, they comprise about 30% of the city’s approximately 3.1 million population and it is impossible to reach herd immunity or 80% of total population without including them,” Belmonte said in the same statement.

As of September 15, the city said it has administered 1,750,537 first doses or 102.97 % of its target population. Fully vaccinated individuals stood at 1,232,681 or 72.51 % of the target population.

Data from the City Epidemiology and Disease Surveillance Unit (CESU) showed that as of September 14, the city has recorded a total of 13,441 cases of COVID-19 among children aged 0 to 17.

Over 1 million people fully vaccinated in Quezon City

Aileen Cerrudo   •   September 14, 2021

QUEZON CITY, Philippines — Over 1 million individuals in Quezon City are now fully vaccinated against coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

As of September 13, record shows that 1,749,916 individuals or 102.94% of the 1.7 million target adult population has received first dose, while 1,091,536 individuals or 67.95% of the 1.7 million target adult population has completed the second dose.

In total, 69.72 percent (1,185,266 individuals) of the city’s target population are now fully vaccinated.

The local government continues to encourage the public to get  vaccinated and register at www.qceservices.quezoncity.gov.ph/qcvaxeasy

 

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