TACLOBAN CITY – Around 1,118 tourism workers here in the region are now fully vaccinated while 663 had already received their first dose of virus against the deadly coronavirus (COVID-19).
These vaccinated workers are employed to the 389 hotels and resorts across the region that have already resumed their operations during this time of pandemic.
The Department of Tourism (DOT) in the region says that there are still 2,104 tourism workers who are still waiting to be vaccinated with 272 are still undecided.
Karina Rosa Tiopes, DOT regional director, said that part of their strategy to encourage those who remain hesitant to get the jab is to talk to them and encourage them to be vaccinated for their own good, in particular.
“Having them vaccinated is also a way of protecting ourselves,” she said.
To increase the number of tourism workers that gets the vaccine, Tiopes said that they are asking local government units to allocate a certain portion of their vaccines for tourism workers.
Tiopes added that Secretary Bernadette Puyat had also promised to provide an allocation of Covid-19 vaccines for all tourism workers in the country.
According to Tiopes, having more tourism workers getting vaccines would boost confidence for tourists to resume travels and visit to tourist destinations thereby helping the circulation of money that helps in improving the local economy.
In Samar province, 26% of the 350 tourism workers in the province are already fully or partially vaccinated.
The province, during the celebration of World Tourism Day 2021 on Tuesday(Sept.28) inoculated  61 individuals who are members of people’s organizations running community-based tourism in the towns of Paranas and Basey, and tourism facility workers in Catbalogan City.
The inoculation drive was also graced by Samar Governor Reynolds Michael Tan, Rep.Sharee Ann Tan (2nd district), and Catbalogan City Mayor Dexter Uy.
The vaccination of tourism workers in the province gives signal that Samar is already ready to welcome the arrival of tourist, according to Gov.Tan.
“Hopefully with this, we can now fully resume the operation of tourism activities in Samar,” he said.