Palace says all documents for Pfizer's COVID-19 shots submitted


Posted at Feb 15 2021 05:31 PM

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The Philippines has submitted all necessary documents to get an initial batch of COVID-19 shots from Pfizer, Malacañang said on Monday.

Some documents have delayed the arrival of the 117,000 Pfizer jabs from the COVAX Facility, a global initiative for vaccine-sharing, an official earlier said. 

“I have heard [vaccine czar] Secretary Carlito Galvez personally say that the ball is in the hands of the manufacturers. Lahat po ng dokumento naibigay na natin. Hinihintay na po natin iyong kanilang pirma sa supply agreement,” said Palace spokesman Harry Roque. 

(We have given all required documents. We are just waiting for their signature on the supply agreement.) 

COVAX earlier said the first Pfizer batch would arrive in “mid-February,” he told reporters. 

A separate initial batch of 600,000 from China's Sinovac Biotech will arrive on Feb. 23, a date “etched in stone,” Roque said. 

Sinovac has no emergency use authorization in the Philippines, unlike Pfizer's COVID-19 shot. 

“May posibilidad din po na before the 23rd baka dumating iyong Pfizer. We cannot tell with precision kung kailan talaga darating ang COVAX Facility,” said Roque. 

“Pero ang sigurado po, magsisimula po tayo ng buwan ng Pebrero.”

(There is a possibility that Pfizer vaccines will arrive before the 23rd. We cannot tell with precision when the vaccines from COVAX Facility will arrive. But what is sure is that we will start our vaccination drive before February.)

The Philippines has lagged behind some of its regional neighbors in securing COVID-19 shots, which it hoped to give to up to 70 million people or two-thirds of the population this year.