Philippines to get 1.5 million COVID-19 shots, including Russia's Sputnik V, in next 2 weeks

Jamaine Punzalan, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 13 2021 05:15 PM | Updated as of Apr 13 2021 05:25 PM

A worker unloads a box of Sinovac Biotech's CoronaVac vaccines against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) from a Chinese military aircraft at Villamor Air Base in Pasay, Metro Manila, Philippines, Feb. 28, 2021. Eloisa Lopez, Reuters/File

MANILA — The Philippines before the end of the month will receive 1.5 million more COVID-19 shots, an official leading the vaccination strategy said on Tuesday. 

Carlito Galvez Jr, chief implementer of the National Task Force Against COVID-19, earlier said the country would get a total of 2 million vaccine doses this April. On Sunday, government took delivery of 500,000 COVID-19 shots from Beijing-based Sinovac Biotech, he said.

Another batch of 500,000 Sinovac shots will arrive on April 22, and another 500,000 Sinovac jabs will be delivered on April 29, said Galvez. 

Within the month, the Philippines will also get its first 500,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine Sputnik V developed by Russia, he said.

"Sa ating April deliveries, on time pa rin po ang 2 million na delivery natin," Galevz said in a press briefing 

(For our April deliveries, our 2-million delivery is still on time.)

About 6 in 10 Filipinos are hesitant to get vaccinated against COVID-19, a recent Pulse Asia survey showed. About half of those who want to get inoculated prefer the vaccine from US-based biotech Pfizer.

Twenty-two percent favor the Sinovac vaccine, and 3 percent wanted the Sputnik V jab. 

The Philippines eyes 30 to 40 million COVID-19 shots from Pfizer, said Galvez. An initial batch of Pfizer jabs expected in February did not push through due to the lack of an indemnity agreement that spells out who will shoulder and be held liable for adverse vaccine effects.

"Nagkaroon po tayo ng renegotiation with Pfizer," Galvez said. "Tinitingnan po natin na baka magkaroon ito ng magandang kaganapan dahil nagkaroon naman po ng favorable… comment ang ating DOJ for the indemnification at saka immunity clause." 

(We had a renegotiation with Pfizer. We are seeing a good result because our Department of Justice had a favorable comment for the indemnification and immunity clause.)

The first Pfizer shots could arrive in the third or fourth quarter, he said. 

Video courtesy of PTV