Local drug distributor to offer Novavax COVID vaccine in PH


Posted at Nov 25 2020 11:50 AM

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MANILA - Once proven safe and effective, local pharmaceutical distributor Faberco Life Sciences Inc., will be supplying the Novavax COVID vaccine in the Philippines.

“Hindi kami maglalabas ng bakuna kung walang matibay na pruweba na ito ay safe and effective,” said Dr. Luningning Villa, Faberco’s medical director and chair of its advisory board.

Villa said the COVID-19 vaccine being developed by US company Novavax is already on its third phase of trial.

“By December, baka makakita na rin kaming initial findings,” she said.

In an interview on TeleRadyo on Wednesday, Villa said Novavax’s COVID-19 vaccine, manufactured by the Serum Institute of India, is being tested in other countries like in the United States and the United Kingdom. She added that almost 50,000 people are involved in the study population.

“Sakaling maganda po ang resulta ng clinical trials baka po mauna ang emergency use sa United Kingdom,” she said.

The Philippines is negotiating with 4 vaccine makers, namely China's Sinovac, AstraZeneca from the UK, US-based Pfizer, and Russian Gamaleya Center for procurement.

“We are in fact offering this both for the government and the private market. But for the government, Serum Institute po ang makikipag-usap sa ating gobyerno kung saka-sakaling mabigyan ng pansin din ang ating bakuna,” she said.

Villa, also a public health expert, said that aside from the safety and efficacy and extensive study, a vaccine must be stable, not too sensitive, readily available, and affordable. 

“Kailangang proven and tested at registered sa atin sa Pilipinas. Maganda rin kung approved ng WHO (World Health Organization) ng Geneva at merong din independent review ng iba’t ibang eksperto,” she said.

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The government aims to vaccinate 60 million Filipinos against COVID-19 next year.

“So more or less, kung merong tayong coverage na 60 to 70 percent ng population ay maaring bumaba ang posibilidad na kumalat nang mabilis o sa mas maraming tao ang sakit kung maganda yung ating vaccination coverage,” she said.

As of Tuesday, the Philippines registered 421,722 COVID-19 infections. Of the total, 386,792 have recovered and 8,185 died.