Syringes for Pfizer vaccine arriving on December 2 — NVOC chairperson
MANILA, Philippines — Syringes for use with Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine are arriving on Thursday, December 2, the chairperson of the National Vaccination Operations Center (NVOC) said Wednesday amid a shortage of syringes for the anti-coronavirus shots from the US drugmaker.
NVOC chairperson and Health Undersecretary Myrna Cabotaje said Pfizer syringes were supposed to arrive on November 22 and 24.
“We had the procurement of about 44 million three months ago but there is a global shortage for the Pfizer syringes. They are supposed to be delivered on November 22, the expected initial tranche of 2 million, and then another 2 million on November 29 did not arrive,” Cabotaje told ABS-CBN News Channel’s Rundown.
“They are arriving on December 2 but we can still use them for the forthcoming vaccination because, after the National Vaccination Days (NVDs), vaccination activities will continue daily,” she added.
Due to the shortage in ancillary supplies, especially syringes for Pfizer vaccines, the government earlier lowered its initial target of rolling out 15 million vaccine doses against COVID-19 to just 9 million jabs during the NVDs on November 29 to December 1.
Cabotaje said the vaccine supply for the three-day inoculation drive dubbed “Bayanihan Bakunahan” was sufficient.
“The supplies for the vaccines are sufficient. We have already deployed to the different provinces, cities, and municipalities the 15 million target that we expected and were targeting for the three days but in terms of the syringes, the Pfizer syringes did not arrive on time,” she added.
Aside from the delayed arrival of syringes, Cabotaje said other challenges they encountered during the NVDs are the non-accommodation of walk-in vaccinees in some areas and the “overwhelming response” during the first day, the lack of ability of some local government units for pediatric vaccination, and the late submission of vaccination accomplishment.
The government is set to hold another mass vaccination drive from December 15 to 17.
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