In PH now: First shipment of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines from COVAX
MANILA, Philippines — The first shipment of Pfizer-BioNTech-developed COVID-19 vaccines, totaling 193,050 doses, arrived in the Philippines on Monday.
The doses were donated by the World Health Organization’s COVAX facility and landed at Manila’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport around 9 p.m.
In a statement, Health Secretary Francisco Duque said the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines will be administered on priority groups A1 to A3 or health workers, senior citizens and persons with comorbidities.
“We have been working hard to bring these vaccines to the country especially with the scarce global supply of COVID-19 vaccines. We thank the COVAX facility and all of our partners for making this possible,” Duque said.
The Department of Health said the first batch of Pfizer vaccines will be distributed across Metro Manila, Cebu and Davao.
👀The Philippines welcomes the arrival of over 193,000 doses of the Pfizer-BioNtech vaccine from the #COVAX Facility.
— World Health Organization Philippines (@WHOPhilippines) May 10, 2021
They were supposed to arrive in mid-February, but the hitch in the indemnity agreement caused delays.
The COVAX facility has so far delivered four shipments of vaccines to the Philippines as part of a global initiative to ensure equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines to low and middle-income countries.
The first shipment of vaccines consisting of 487,200 doses was delivered on March 4, 38,400 more doses were delivered on March 7 and the third delivery consisting of 2 million doses was delivered on Saturday, May 8—all of which are of the brand AstraZeneca.
Vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. said the Philippines can expect 1.1 million more doses of Pfizer’s jab by the end of May.
The Pfizer vaccine will be the fourth brand to be used by the Philippines in its vaccination drive after Sinovac, AstraZeneca, and Sputnik V.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.