PAGCOR intensifies employee vaccination and other measures to keep gaming sites safe from COVID-19

Wed| 2.09.2022 | 5:00 PM

PAGCOR intensifies employee vaccination and other measures to keep gaming sites safe from COVID-19A PAGCOR employee receives booster shot during the vaccination held in Casino Filipino Manila Bay. The PAGCOR management has been working closely with government entities to provide booster shots for its fully-vaccinated employees.

As businesses slowly recover from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) ensures that all its owned and operated establishments are safe with the vaccination of almost all of its workforce.

Out of the agency’s 12,051 employees, 99.59% or 12,002 have already been vaccinated. Only 0.41% or 49 personnel remain unvaccinated due to health-related reasons. Said unvaccinated personnel are either on leave or are working from home to ensure that all of PAGCOR’s gaming venues and work areas are manned by fully vaccinated personnel.

Meanwhile, of the fully vaccinated employees, over 60% already received their booster shots as of February 9, 2022.

The PAGCOR management has also been working closely with government entities such as the host city local governments and the Metro Manila Development Authority to provide booster shots for its fully-vaccinated employees.

PAGCOR Chairman and CEO Andrea Domingo said the health and safety of gaming personnel and patrons are among the management’s paramount concerns, hence, the agency encouraged its employees to be vaccinated soonest.

“We want our customers to feel safe and comfortable when they visit our establishments that is why we aimed for a hundred percent vaccination rate among our personnel to thwart incidences of infection among employees and guests,” Domingo said.

The PAGCOR chief added that although there were employees who have tested positive for COVID-19, most of them were community acquired, and cases were mostly asymptomatic. Vital measures were also adopted by different gaming venues to prevent the further spread of the disease that may halt gaming operations.

“We have seen how the pandemic has taken a toll on our revenue generation and contributions to nation-building, particularly our remittances to national coffers. To stay committed to our mission, at the same time to ensure the welfare of employees and guests, our Casino Filipino (CF) branches and Satellite Operations Groups (SOGs) have upped the ante by taking further safety procedures in their properties,” she explained.

Some of the additional health and safety measures being adopted by PAGCOR's gaming venues include compliance to government-mandated minimum public health standards (MPHS); securing Safety Seal Certificates from respective local government units; use of contact tracing and COVID-19 screening app or PAGCOR’s QR Code application dubbed Casino Customer Information System; and the Daily Symptoms Monitoring Report for employees.

Other safety measures being enforced are temperature check at customers’ and employees’ processing points; provision of hand sanitizers/alcohol in strategic locations; heightened cleaning and sanitation of gaming facilities including their offices; full vaccination of employees; constant reminders to follow the MPHS via posters, LED screens and public address systems; and integrating MPHS into the guidelines and procedures of marketing programs and activities.

The gaming venues also developed and deployed a system to facilitate physical distancing in slot machines, wherein patrons can only activate slots for play when membership card is used/inserted in the machine; implemented cash-to-chips transactions only at the cage; do regular cleaning of air-conditioning units; enforced ‘no smoking policy’ inside the casinos and provided a smoking lounge with limited number of smokers admitted at a time.

Likewise, food and beverage are no longer served at gaming tables and dining (with physical distancing) is only allowed at designated dining areas.

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