Health worker administers 2nd dose of Covid-19 vaccine to a senior citizen. ||File photo

The Puerto Princesa CoVac program is unable to provide the second dose of Russian Gamaleya Sputnik V vaccines because of a delayed shipment of doses purchased by the national government.

However, City Health Officer Dr. Ric Panganiban said those who have received the first dose of the vaccine need not be anxious if they missed their scheduled second shot.

“Huwag silang mag-alala, kasi kahit 90 days pa ang interval walang problema. Mag-antay lang muna talaga tayo kasi wala pang dumarating na pang-second dose,” he said in an interview on Saturday.

Panganiban explained that unlike other vaccine brands, the two doses of Sputnik vaccines are different from one another. This means that one cannot use the same vaccine used in the first dose for the second dose.

“Kahit ang  kulay ng vial noon magkaiba, hindi ‘yon puwedeng gamitin ulit. Ang dumating this week na more than 5,000 doses, pang-first dose lang ‘yon,” he said.

The city government administered the first doses of Sputnik vaccines in early June, and were instructed to take their second dose exactly after 21 days.

On Wednesday, June 23, vaccine czar and National Task Force (NTF) chief implementer Carlito Galvez, Jr. confirmed the delay of 50,000 purchased Sputnik doses. Galvez attributed the delay to the manufacturer, who reportedly was planning to modify the doses to be more effective against new COVID-19 virus variants. New variants of the virus are being reported nationwide to be more infectious and deadlier than the original variant that emerged in 2020, particularly the Delta variant.