House panel OKs bill tapping dentists, medtechs as COVID-19 vaccinators

Published August 11, 2021, 3:05 PM

by Hannah Torregoza 

The measure seeking to deploy dentists and licensed medical technologists as additional medical personnel duly trained by the Department of Health (DOH) to be at the forefront of the government’s fight against the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is now up for plenary discussion.

This was after the House Committee on Health approved House Bill No. 9354 which seeks to allow dentists and medical technologists to be COVID-19 vaccinators and help in the rollout of COVID-19 vaccination program in the country.

The measure was filed by Representatives Angelina “Helen” Tan, Christopher “Kit” Belmonte, and Stella Quimbo who stressed the need to augment the number of vaccinators in the country.

The bill primarily seeks to amend Republic Act No. 11525 or the COVID-19 Vaccination Program Act, which only allows duly-trained pharmacists and midwives to administer the vaccines alongside doctors and medical professionals.

It was Nueva Ecija Representative Estrellita Suansing who made the motion to approve the measure during the virtual hearing. This was later seconded and approved by the panel.

According to the lawmakers, deploying dentists and medical technologists will help expedite the rollout of the government’s vaccination program as more vaccines arrive in the country.

This will also prevent the possible expiration of the doses, the lawmakers said.

“This bill aims to amend Republic Act No. 11525 to add additional medical personnel as vaccinators to help in the inoculation and effective rollout of the COVID-19 vaccines in the country,” the lawmakers stated in the explanatory note of the bill.