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Ramping up vaccine education efforts in a time of hesitation

By AYIE LICSI Published May 04, 2021 10:25 am

Getting the COVID-19 vaccine is a personal choice; but if people are misinformed, they won’t be able to make sound choices on important matters like this.

Food manufacturing company CDO Foodsphere entered a tripartite agreement with the government and Go Negosyo and began ramping up efforts on vaccination. To kick off the campaign, the company conducted a survey among its employees, where it learned that only a quarter of its workers were willing to get vaccinated.

“We believe, at this time, the vaccine is the only solution to combat the effects of this pandemic. It has taken a lot of livelihood and lives already, and the moment we got access to the vaccines, it was one step closer to the nation’s recovery,” CDO president and CEO Jerome Ong said.

Vaccine education from the top-down

The company recently held a webinar titled, Handa Ka na ba sa Bakuna?, which invited Dr. Cynthia Saloma, executive director of the Philippine Genome Center; Dr. Nina Gloriani, chair of the DOST Vaccine Expert Panel for the Philippines; and Dr. Reynaldo Mariano, president and infectious disease specialist at Center for Health Services Inc. (CHSI). The webinar explained the benefits of vaccines and the risks of acquiring other COVID variants.

CDO continued its information campaign, and together with the CHSI, it created materials and held small group discussions to effectively address the staff’s top concerns and queries about getting immunized.

The goal for 100% vaccination

To date, CDO has spent over P12 million on vaccine purchase and may still procure doses from other brands. The company has made the jab optional and free for employees who are medically cleared to be immunized with COVID-19 vaccines.

“We don’t see it as a waste of resources. There will always be one person who will need help in getting a vaccine. Some may not be open to it right now, but eventually, we will realize that this is the only ammunition that we have against COVID-19 at this time. It is a race against an evolving and adapting virus so we always have to be on guard,” explained Ong.

Moreover, the food manufacturer encourages its employees to take advantage of doses already available from local government units.

Based on the company’s latest survey, vaccine confidence has increased significantly to 70 percent while confidence from its leaders has jumped 91 percent.

“No one will be left behind in our organization. Everyone will be given the same level of care and assistance when it comes to the vaccination rollout,” concluded Ong.

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Editor’s Note: BrandedUp is designed to provide you with insightful, inspiring and educational content created by PhilSTAR L!fe in collaboration with brands like CDO Foodsphere.