The delivery of 30 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine Covovax to the country will begin in the third quarter of the year, Fabreco Life Institutes Medical Director Dr. Luningning Villa said on Monday.
In a virtual Palace presser, Villa said the delivery will start “within” July, August, and September.
“More or less five to six months, matagal na po siguro ‘yung six months na makumpleto po iyong (six months would be the maximum period to complete the) delivery,” Villa added.
Fabreco Life Institutes is the local partner of Serum Institute of India (SII) which is the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer.
SII and Novavax, a US-based biotechnology company, have partnered to develop and commercialize the Covovax vaccine.
Through vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr., the government has signed a term sheet for the supply of the 30 million Covavax vaccine doses.
Covavax is in Phase 3 clinical trials and is expected to be approved for use by international regulators.
“We hope to have the EUA (emergency use authorization). Most likely, the United Kingdom will go first because they will finish the clinical trial first,” Villa said. “And of course, with that, with the results of Phase 3, we’ll have hopefully EUA here in the Philippines by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration), of course with their evaluation.”
Covovax, Villa noted, is stable at 2°C to 8°C which is the standard temperature that is within the existing cold chain system in the country.
“Kahit doon sa malalayong baranggay na may health facility na magkakaroon ng vaccination, kayang-kaya po, stable pa rin po ang Covavax (Even if in the remotest barangays with health facility that will have vaccination, it can be used, the Covavax is still stable),” she said.
Apart from Covavax, the country has also secured 25 million doses of Sinovac vaccines and 2.6 million doses of vaccine from AstraZeneca which are expected to arrive in the second quarter of the year.
During the same Palace briefing, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said the first 50,000 doses of China’s Sinovac vaccine will arrive in February aside from 15,000 doses to be used for clinical trials in the country.
“At least, by February, 65,000 na ang mabibigyan ng bakuna (But at least, 65,000 will be inoculated by February),” he said.
He said the delivery of 25 million doses of Sinovac vaccines is expected to be completed by December this year.
The government has also been negotiating with other pharmaceutical companies including Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, and Gamaleya Institute. (PNA)