MANILA, Philippines — At least 5.6 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines from Pfizer–BioNTech and AstraZeneca are expected to arrive in the country within the first quarter of this year, vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. said Sunday.
Galvez said the Philippines stands to get a total of 9,407,400 doses from the two pharmaceutical firms within the first and second quarters of this year through the World Health Organization-led COVAX facility.
The country will receive 117,000 doses of Pfizer–BioNTech vaccines, which will be delivered in mid-February, while 5,500,800 to 9,290,400 doses are expected from AstraZeneca, whose initial delivery is scheduled by mid to late February, according to the letter of COVAX facility to the Philippine government.
“I would like to emphasize that according to COVAX the number of doses and the projected arrival of the vaccines are all indicative since it all depends on the global supply,” Galvez said in a statement.
Galvez said many local government units (LGUs) and the private sector are ready for the vaccine roll-out: from their vaccination sites, to their cold storage equipment and facilities, to their personnel.
“We were all clueless then on how to effectively manage and mitigate the impact of this infectious disease. But with the arrival of vaccines and the implementation of the National Action Plan Against COVID-19, we are now in a better position to put an end to the epidemic,” he said.
Galvez earlier said the government aims to inoculate 50 million to 70 million Filipinos using the 148 million doses of vaccines it expects to obtain from seven pharmaceutical firms.
He urged Filipinos to “set their fears aside” and get vaccinated against Covid-19, assuring that the vaccines the government will administer passed the stringent selection and evaluation process of the vaccine experts panel, FDA, and the Department of Health.
“We are confident that with the whole nation working together, we will be able to recover our economy and bring back a greater sense of normalcy among our people,” he said.
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