MANILA - The distribution of Sinovac-produced vaccines to 3 government hospitals in Quezon City past midnight Monday lasted 3 hours following a nearly 2-hour turnover at a military hospital.
The V. Luna Medical Center, also known as the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Medical Center, was the first destination of the refrigerated van which carried around 2,400 vials of the CoronaVac jab.
The police-escorted convoy left the Department of Health storage facility in Marikina at 12:38 am—the last of 4 vans scheduled to deliver vaccines to 7 public hospitals in Caloocan City, Pasig City, Manila, and Quezon City.
When they arrived at V. Luna’s emergency room minutes before 1 AM, the escorting police officers from the Quezon City Police District encountered no staff from the hospital tasked to receive the 600 vials they brought.
The vaccines could not be unloaded without an authorized staff to receive them.
A pharmacist arrived 40 minutes later to handle the turnover to the hospital’s cold storage facility, which lasted for almost an hour.
No hospital official was available to give a statement as to why no one readily received the delivery.
The refrigerated van left V. Luna at 2:46 am for the next drop-off point, the Lung Center of the Philippines.
UNLOADED IN MINUTES
In contrast, the unloading of the vaccines at the Lung Center and the Veterans Memorial Medical Center (VMMC), took place minutes upon their arrival.
At the Lung Center, the box of 600 vials was immediately placed on a trolley and brought inside the building with a 40-minute turnover before leaving.
A team of pharmacists were on-hand at the driveway of the facility in VMMC to receive the van with its remaining 1,200 vials when it arrived there at 3:42 am—more than 3 hours after the convoy left Marikina.
Government officials are expected to get jabs at the inaugural distribution of the Sinovac CoronaVac vaccines in these hospitals on Monday morning.
Around 600,000 vaccines arrived from China on Sunday afternoon with Pres. Rodrigo Duterte leading the officials that received the cargo in Villamor Airbase.
Other hospitals whose vials were delivered during the overnight convoy were: Dr. Jose N. Rodriguez Memorial Hospital in Tala, Caloocan; the Pasig City General Hospital, the Philippine National Police General Hospital in Camp Crame, and the University of the Philippines- Philippine General Hospital in Manila.