OFW deployment to Israel continues amid threats of Omicron variant — POEA

Published December 1, 2021, 6:02 PM

by Alexandria Dennise San Juan

The government will continue to deploy overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) to Israel despite the country’s announcement that it would ban the entry of all foreign visitors amid the threats brought by the Omicron variant of the coronavirus.

(Jansen Romero/MANILA BULLETIN File Photo)

Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) Administrator Bernard P. Olalia said the Philippines has yet to receive an official announcement regarding the ban of entry of OFWs in Israel.

“Hangga’t wala silang anunsyo at instruction, tayo ay patuloy na magdedeploy ng ating mga caregivers sa bansang Israel (As long as they do not have an announcement and instruction, we will continue to deploy our caregivers to Israel),” Olalia noted.

According to the POEA chief, they already deployed more than 500 caregivers to Israel as part of a government-to-government hiring arrangement with the agency.

He added that they have been deploying healthcare workers, including caregivers, to the Middle Eastern country every week.

“Ang Israel mismo ang nagsabi na madaliin natin ang deployment (It is Israel who wants to speed up our deployment. They immediately need healthcare workers, lalo na yung mga caregivers so kailangan patuloy ang ating deployment (especially the caregivers so we need to continuously deploy them),” Olalia said.

Israel was the first country to shut its borders in response to the new and potentially more contagious COVID-19 variant which was earlier declared by the World Health Organization as a “variant of concern.”