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COVID-19 vaccines for Filipinos: Origins, efficacy, side effects
A nurse fills a syringe with the Pfizer-BioNtech coronavirus disease (Covid-19) vaccine on Jan. 4, 2020 at the Antonin Balmes gerontology center in Montpellier in the south of France.
AFP/Pascal Guyot

COVID-19 vaccines for Filipinos: Origins, efficacy, side effects

Ratziel San Juan (Philstar.com) - January 14, 2021 - 12:30pm

MANILA, Philippines — Thanks to unprecedented vaccine development, countries have already started implementing immunization programs to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Philippines, meanwhile, lags behind in authorizing and procuring vaccines. This essentially buys Filipinos time to debate the merits and faults of different jab options 

Here's a simple, health-specific guide to COVID-19 vaccines that the country could secure.

AstraZeneca

Country of Origin: United Kingdom
Vaccine Type: Viral Vector Vaccine, which uses a virus that has been genetically engineered so that it can’t cause disease, but produces coronavirus proteins to safely generate an immune response.
Doses: 1-2 
Efficacy:  62% to 90%
Side Effects: According to medical journal The Lancet, fatigue and headache were the most commonly reported systemic reactions in earlier trials. Other reported side effects include mild to moderate pain after vaccination, muscle ache, malaise, chills and fever.
Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) Status: Application is in the middle of evaluation. A decision could be released before the end of the month.

Gamaleya

Country of Origin: Russia
Vaccine Type: Viral Vector Vaccine, which uses a virus that has been genetically engineered so that it can’t cause disease, but produces coronavirus proteins to safely generate an immune response.
Doses: 2
Efficacy: 91%
Side Effects: No serious side effects were reported in Phase 3 clinical trials. However, earlier trials saw participants experiencing low-grade fevers.
EUA Status: Needs to submit documents for their EUA issuance. The early evaluation for Gamaleya's Sputnik V has started.

Moderna

Country of Origin: United States
Vaccine Type: RNA Vaccine, which uses genetically engineered RNA to generate a protein that itself safely prompts an immune response.
Doses: 2
Efficacy: 94.5%
Side Effects: According to the United States Food and Drug Administration, the most commonly reported side effects, typically lasting several days, are pain at the injection site, tiredness, headache, muscle pain, chills, joint pain, swollen lymph nodes in the same arm as the injection, nausea and vomiting, as well as fever. More people experienced the said effects after the second dose than the first dose.
EUA Status: No application yet.

Novavax

Country of Origin: United States
Vaccine Type: Protein-based Vaccine, which uses harmless fragments of proteins or protein shells that mimic the COVID-19 virus to safely generate an immune response.
Doses: 2
Efficacy: Phase 3 clinical trials ongoing
Side Effects: Phase 3 clinical trials ongoing
EUA Status: No application yet.

Pfizer-BioNTech

Country of Origin: United States-Germany
Vaccine Type: RNA Vaccine, which uses genetically engineered RNA to generate a protein that itself safely prompts an immune response.
Doses: 2
Efficacy: 95%
Side Effects: According to the United States Food and Drug Administration, the most commonly reported side effects, typically lasting several days, are pain at the injection site, tiredness, headache, muscle pain, chills, joint pain and fever. More people experienced the said effects after the second dose than the first dose.
EUA Status: Approved

Sinopharm

Country of Origin: China
Vaccine Type: Inactivated Virus Vaccine, which uses a form of the virus that has been inactivated or weakened so it doesn’t cause disease, but still generates an immune response.
Doses: 2
Efficacy: 79%
Side Effects: Taiwan News reported a Shanghai-based vaccine expert describing the vaccine as the "most unsafe vaccine in the world" with 73 local and systemic adverse reactions. For local reactions, headache is listed under "very common." Meanwhile, flush, swelling, scleroma, rash and itching are listed under "common." Erythema is listed under "uncommon." For systemic adverse reactions, headache is listed under "very common," while fever, fatigue, muscle ache, joint pain, cough, difficulty breathing, nausea, diarrhea and itchy skin are listed under "common."
EUA Status: No application yet.

Sinovac

Country of Origin: China
Vaccine Type: Inactivated Virus Vaccine, which uses a form of the virus that has been inactivated or weakened so it doesn’t cause disease, but still generates an immune response.
Doses: 2
Efficacy: 50% to 78%
Side Effects: Earlier clinical trials showed pain at the injection site was the most frequently reported symptom. Most of the adverse reactions were solicited and mild in severity.
EUA Status: Needs to submit documents for their EUA issuance. The FDA is still waiting for the report on Sinovac's Phase 3 clinical trials. — With reports from One News

Infographic by Philstar.com/Enrico Alonzo

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