Duterte to senators after Norway deaths: You want Pfizer vaccine? We’ll order for you
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday scorned senators who are urging the government to prioritize buying COVID-19 vaccines developed by Pfizer-BioNTech after reports that some old and highly frail people in Norway died after receiving the shots.
“You senators want Pfizer?b In Norway, 25 persons died after receiving Pfizer vaccination. Do you want it? We’ll order for you. That’s what you want as it repeatedly gets reported in articles of the Inquirer,” Duterte said, speaking partly in Filipino during his weekly taped briefing.
It remains unclear whether there’s a direct link between the deaths in Norway and the vaccine.
Due to the high efficacy rate of the Pfizer vaccine, several senators have urged the government to prioritize the negotiations with the pharmaceutical giant.
Pfizer has already secured an emergency use authorization (EUA) in the Philippines for its vaccine which is expected to be used through the COVAX facility.
Health authorities said they will wait for Pfizer’s report regarding the reported deaths in Norway.
The Philippines has so far secured 25 million doses of coronavirus vaccines from China’s Sinovac BioTech, 17 million doses from British drugmaker AstraZeneca through the private sectors and local government units, and 30 million doses of Indian-made Covovax vaccine.
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