COVID-19 vaccines in the Philippines

COVID-19 vaccines in the Philippines

LATEST UPDATE: January 25, 2021 - 6:21pm
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23 hours ago

The Department of Health clarifies that the Philippines will continue to receive vaccine allocation for 20% of the population from the COVAX facility.

However, only 15% will be free while the remaining 5% will be shouldered by the country.

"The budget for the 5% has been secured. Hence, even with these changes in financing, rest assured that there will be no delays in delivery of the vaccines," DOH says.

January 21, 2021

The World Bank announces it will put $34 million into a program to provide coronavirus vaccines for more than two million people in Lebanon, which is experiencing a major surge in COVID-19 cases.

"This is the first World Bank-financed operation to fund the procurement of COVID-19 vaccines," the Washington-based institution says in a statement.

Lebanon, a country of more than six million, has been logging some 5,500 cases a day since the start of the year, the Bank says. — AFP

January 18, 2021

The Department of Health clarifies that the vaccine prices reported by the Senate are not the negotiated prices that the government and the manufacturer agreed on.

The vaccine prices that circulated earlier were indicative market prices based on rates published by drugmakers, the DOH says.

"The DOH urges the public to trust and respect the process that the country, through vaccine czar Secretary Carlito Galvez, is undertaking to ensure that Filipinos are afforded the best vaccines at the most ideal prices," the agency says in a statement.

January 14, 2021

The House of Representatives committee on Health will conduct its own hearing on the government's COVID-19 vaccination plan on January 18.

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III and National Task Force Against COVID-19 Chief Implementer and vaccine czar Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. have been invited as resource persons for the inquiry.

Representatives from the Food and Drug Administration, Research Institute for Tropical Medicine, Health Technology Assessment Council, Department of Science and Technology and World Health Organization have also been invited.

January 14, 2021

Sen. Grace Poe says the government should immediately negotiate the purchase and delivery of Pfizer vaccine now that the Food and Drug Administration has approved it for emergency use.

"The Filipinos have long waited for a safe and effective vaccine that would give them protection against COVID-19," Poe says in a statement.

"Negotiations with Pfizer should be prioritized over deals with other manufacturers whose products have yet to get FDA's approval," she adds.

January 14, 2021

China's Sinovac applies for emergency use authorization for its coronavirus vaccine.

January 14, 2021

The Philippines approves Pfizer-BioNTech's coronavirus vaccine for emergency use.

January 13, 2021

The Philippines may be able to get about 25 million to 40 million doses of Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine, according to vaccine czar Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr.

"Hindi po tayo iniwan ng Pfizer. They made commitment, if they have excess from US and other countries, pwede magdeliver sa atin," Galvez tells President Rodrigo Duterte during a meeting aired Wednesday night.

Galvez adds that the private sector also signed another deal with AstraZeneca, which allow the Philippines to purchase more or less 17 million doses.

January 13, 2021

Reacting to news that Sinovac's CoronaVac showed 50% general efficacy in studies in Brazil, Sen. Kiko Pangilinan called on the government cancel its order of 25 million doses of the drug.

On Twitter, Pangilinan wrote that the Chinese-made vaccine—the first major purchase by the national government—is six times more expensive than Astrazeneca's vaccine with 70% efficacy.

"Sinovac is more expensive yet having almost 20% lower efficacy. Given these latest findings, we call on the DoH to cancel the purchase of Sinovac vaccines," Pangilinan tweeted.

The national government has so far secured two official deals for COVID-19 vaccine supplies in the Philippines, one with Chinese pharmaceutical company Sinovac and another with the Serum Institute of India.

Watch this space for bite-sized developments on the vaccines in the Philippines. (Main image by Markus Spiske via Unsplash)

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