SMC employees now getting company-procured AZ vaccines

Published July 28, 2021, 3:33 PM

by James A. Loyola

San Miguel Corporation (SMC) announced that it has started administering company-procured vaccines to its workforce with the delivery of 150,000 doses acquired from Astra Zeneca.

Bought under SMC’s P1 billion Ligtas Lahat vaccination program, the vaccines are good for 75,000 individuals and enough to cover all direct and indirect workers across SMC’s nationwide network.

San Miguel Corporation (SMC) President Ramon S. Ang

“With the arrival of our vaccines, we are now assured that we can vaccinate all our employees, consultants, and support workers across the San Miguel Group, bringing us closer to our goal of herd immunity in our workplaces and facilities nationwide,” said SMC President Ramon S. Ang.

He added that “This also means we no longer have to rely on our national government and LGUs, who have been instrumental in getting many of our essential workers vaccinated. We can now take care of our own, and government can continue vaccinating more essential workers and priority groups to help boost our economy.”

To sustain and expand its vaccination program, Ang said the company expects delivery of another batch of 150,000 doses of AstraZeneca vaccines for next year, under the tri-partite agreement that the private sector signed with the government and the British-Swedish drug maker last November 2020.

Initial rollout of the company-procured vaccines last Tuesday at San Miguel Sports Complex in Pasig.

SMC started administering the vaccines last Tuesday to 1,000 employees of external partners at its sports complex-turned vaccination site in Pasig City.

Vaccination activities for employees and indirect workers will follow at company vaccination sites nationwide.

Ang said the company had also conducted information drives to “better educate our employees on the benefits of vaccination and help address hesitancy.”

“We are proud that a very high percentage of our employees nationwide have signed up for the vaccine. With our experience helping LGUs in their vaccination rollout, and with the partnerships we’ve established with healthcare providers and various vaccination sites, I believe we are more than ready to stage an efficient, effective, and safe rollout of our vaccination program.”

As of July 26, the company has dispatched an initial batch of 26,700 doses out of the 150,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine to vaccination sites in Pasig, Isabela, Pangasinan, Pampanga, Laguna, Bataan, Cavite, Batangas, Cebu, Iloilo, Bacolod, Davao, and Cagayan de Oro.

According to Ang, achieving herd immunity is possible for the San Miguel Group as an estimated 17,000 employees to date have either received their initial doses or are fully-vaccinated against COVID-19.

This number is comprised of employees who were vaccinated under SMC’s partnership with LGUs and Inter-Agency Task Force for Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) and those, who along with their families, had themselves vaccinated on their own initiative.

As of July 26, an initial batch of 26,700 doses of vaccines were already delivered or on their way to various sites, namely in San Miguel Sports Complex in Pasig, Isabela, Pangasinan, Pampanga, Laguna, Bataan, Cavite, Batangas, Cebu, Iloilo, Bacolod, Davao, and Cagayan de Oro.

For the San Miguel Sports Complex alone, the company expects to vaccinate 1,000 employees per day, starting July 27, and also on July 29 and July 30.

Aside from SMC Sports Complex, SMC is also utilizing the La Salle Green Hills and the Jose Rizal University (JRU) campuses as vaccination sites. SMC and the Mandaluyong LGU jointly manage the JRU site dedicated for both Mandaluyong residents and essential workers.

“We have fully prepared these sites with the help of our own medical personnel. The SMC doctors and nurses we deployed to various LGU vaccination sites to augment the vaccination teams will remain in these areas to help the local government units, except for a few who will assist in the company’s own vaccination efforts,” Ang said.