The Philippines may receive less than 10 million COVID-19 vaccine doses from American pharmaceutical companies Pfizer Inc. and Moderna Inc. next month as the country intensifies its mass inoculation drive to contain the spread of coronavirus, the country’s vaccine czar said on Tuesday.
Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr., the government’s vaccination coordinator, said in a report to President Rodrigo Roa Duterte that they have negotiated with Pfizer, which has committed to deliver around 5 million doses of COVID-19 jab next month.
“And we are negotiating with Moderna na makapagbigay sila ng more or less 3 to 4 million,” Galvez told the President.
Galvez, who is also the chief implementer of the National Task Force Against COVID-19, said that to ensure steady supply of vaccines, the government has signed a purchase order for additional 10 million doses of CoronaVac vaccine.
The government decided to buy more jabs from China’s Sinovac Biotech after the 26 million doses delivered by the drugmaker have been depleted, Galvez said.
“So ang ginawa po natin para magkaroon tayo ng steady supply ay nag-order po tayo ng 10 million doses of Sinovac. At ito po maganda po ito, ito po ay mababa po ang presyo kaysa sa original price niya,” he said.
“So ang nakikita po natin ay talagang medyo gumaganda po ang ano po natin ngayon sa Sinovac, maganda po ang supply niya, steady.”
Citing the Philippine Vaccine Tracker, Galvez said a total of 48,522,890 vaccine doses have been delivered to the country.
The total shipment is comprised of 27.9 million doses procured by the national government, 3.6 million purchased by the private sector, 3.2 million donation from the COVAX facility and 3.6 million donated by other countries.
The vaccine czar also clarified the vaccine procurements arranged through tripartite agreements with LGUs and the private sector.
Galvez brushed off accusations that the national government has delayed the signing of agreements, explaining it is just exercising due diligence in vaccine procurements.
“Talagang gusto po namin ‘yung pera ng LGU at ‘yung pera ng private sector, hindi po sila mapapahamak sa ginagawa po natin,” he told the President.
In addition, vaccine manufacturers prefer to negotiate with the national government since they find it easier to seal deals with a single entity, he said. PND