President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. has agreed to a proposal by health authorities to consider one as having been fully vaccinated only if they have been injected with at least one booster shot, according to local state media.

“The move was also in preparation for the impending full implementation of face-to-face classes this year,” the Philippine News Agency said in a report. 

Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario S. Vergeire asked the president to redefine the term “fully vaccinated” to encourage people to get a booster shot, it said.  

Meanwhile, Mr. Marcos met with health officials to discuss the government’s pandemic situation, according to the Department of Health (DoH). They also talked about vaccination efforts. 

DoH said Ms. Vergeire had recommended to improve the country’s response to the health crisis, which forced the Duterte government to enforce stringent lockdowns that were opposed by businesses. 

Mr. Marcos has yet to name his health chief, as well as the heads of Energy, Environment, and Science and Technology departments. 

His Finance chief Benjamin E. Diokno said the government would no longer enforce general lockdowns under the Marcos administration. 

“I think no country now — except maybe China — will go into general lockdowns,” he told a news briefing. “We have to live with the virus.” — Kyle Aristophere T. Atienza