Domestic workers

No certainty at the moment. Entry pilot program for domestic workers to start April 25 – Health authorities

Health authorities said they are not yet sure whether the Filipino domestic worker entry exemption pilot program will launch as previously reported on April 25.

Although with a delay, the relevant information on the administrative procedures regarding the corresponding requests has already been uploaded to the Health Bureau’s pandemic page.

However, the coordinator of the novel coronavirus coordination and response center, Dr. Leong Iek Hou, noted that since the program includes the skills of various public services, medical observation hotels, program development, among other factors. , all these factors need to be resolved so that the general public can formulate the request in a simpler and more effective way.

As originally planned, the program was to start on April 25, with local employers able to apply to hire vaccinated non-resident Filipino domestic workers if their job purpose involved caring for people aged 65 or older, d children aged 3 or over. below, or sick patients.

“It should be available as soon as possible on April 25, but it depends on the whole ordering system. The final launch date of this program will be announced later,” Dr. Leong noted yesterday.

Dr. Leong Iek also pointed out that as a trial program, in line with global pandemic prevention in Macao, it may be halted if pandemic risks are believed to increase in the city.

Under this program, employers will need to apply to the Public Security Police Service (CPSP) and the Health Bureau for permission to hire a Filipino domestic worker.

The plan also requires that those targeted for care and cohabitants over the age of 3 have received two doses of the vaccine and that domestic workers have also taken at least two doses and be subject to quarantine.

If the domestic worker entering Macau tests positive for Covid-19, employers will also have to pay the medical costs, with Dr Leong noting that the cost will depend on the severity of the symptoms and the treatment provided.

The worker will have to stay in a quarantined hotel for 14 days or in a residence that has a single room, in addition to being subject to regular tests, at the expense paid by the employers or the worker.

Since the workers will be required to remain under medical observation, but there are currently vacancies in the specialized quarantine hotel located at the Treasure Hotel, the Public Relations Manager of the Macau Government Tourism Office (MGTO) , Lau Fong Chi, said the department has already been in close contact with the Health Bureau in order to arrange appropriate medical observation hotels, after setting guidelines and criteria of anti-epidemic requirements. .

This week, lawmakers also called on authorities to further relax the requirements of the proposed entry pilot scheme, warning that the process of hiring a domestic helper remains too costly and complicated for local residents.