Gov’t now requires unvaxxed onsite workers in Alert Level 2 areas to get tested

FILE PHOTO A man getting swabbed for COVID-19. Image from OVP / Facebook

MANILA, Philippines — Onsite employees in the public and private sector in areas under Alert Level 2 and higher who remain unvaccinated against COVID-19 will have to undergo RT-PCR tests once every two weeks or antigen tests weekly, Malacañang announced Tuesday.

This came as a result of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases’ (IATF) decision to update the testing requirements for unvaccinated employees.

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Acting presidential spokesperson and Palace Communications Secretary Martin Andanar said all establishments in areas where there is sufficient COVID-19 vaccine supply must require their employees, who are tasked to do on-site work, to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

Those who are unvaccinated, however, must undergo RT-PCR tests once every two weeks or antigen tests weekly.

Public sector employees, including local government units, may cover the costs of the RT-PCR or antigen tests, but will be subject to availability of funds, and civil service, accounting and auditing rules and regulations, Andanar said.

Employees with recent COVID-19 infection within 90 days and those with alternative working arrangements that do not require on-site work are exempted from this new testing requirements.