Duterte vouches for China’s Sinovac, says LGUs may choose any vaccine brand

Marje Pelayo   •   January 14, 2021   •   524

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday (January 13) vouched for the efficacy of Sinovac, the COVID-19 vaccine developed in China.

He said the Chinese-made vaccine is “as good as any other” vaccines developed in the United States and Europe.

“Hindi nagkulang ang Chinese sa utak (The Chinese is not lacking in knowledge). They would not venture kung hindi sapat (if it’s not) safe, sure, and secure. Iyang tatlo. It must be safe, sure and secure. That is the guarantee,” the President said.

His remark comes after several local government units (LGUs) opted to choose and procure the brand of their choice other than the ones preferred by the national government. 

“We are not forcing anybody to join the cause of the national government,” Duterte said.

“I am addressing this to the mayors. You can choose any vaccine you like to buy. Wala kaming pakialam kung ano ang pipiliin niyo (We don’t care which one you choose). Hindi kami makialam sa lahat ng bagay in the purchase (We won’t meddle in anything that has to do with the [vaccine] purchase),” he stressed.

But he reminded the local chief executives that it is still the national government that approves whatever medicine or drugs should be made available for public consumption.

The President maintained that he prefers whatever vaccine czar Secretary Carlito Galvez will procure, for after all, he is his representative and that his decision will be the President’s responsibility.

“Ang responsibility niya ay responsibility ko rin. Kung may bulilyaso at the end of the day, akin talaga yang responsibility (His responsibility is my responsibility. If there are problems along the way, at the end of the day, it is my responsibility),” the President stressed.

During the meeting, Galvez confirmed that the national government is set to grant the Chinese drugmaker Sinovac its emergency use authorization (EUA) for its vaccine before February 20.

The official added that initial delivery will be 50,000 doses, followed by 950,000 doses in March then to one to three million in increasing volumes in the succeeding months. 

Duterte, Xi call for ‘win-win’ cooperation on 46th anniversary of PH-China ties

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 10, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—President Rodrigo Duterte and Chinese President Xi Jinping both call for a “win-win” cooperation in commemoration of the 46th anniversary of Philippine-China relations.

The Philippine President expressed his gratitude for  China’s assistance to the Philippines in the face of challenges brought by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Philippine-China economic ties are of course the dynamic force that will continue to drive or bilateral relations forward,” Duterte told Xi in a statement.

“I am confident that my Administration’s Build Build Build program together with the Belt and Road Initiative, will reap long-term benefits for our peoples,” he added.

Meanwhile, in a letter addressed to Duterte, the Chinese president acknowledged that in recent years, with concerted efforts of both sides, Philippine- China relations have remained “healthy and stable.”

“I attach great significance to the development of China-Philippines relations, and stand ready to work with you in guiding our bilateral relations to move forward in a sustained and steady manner, so as to achieve greater win-win results and mutual benefits,” Xi said. AAC


PH receives additional 1M doses of Sinovac vaccine

Marje Pelayo   •   June 10, 2021


MANILA, Philippines — A total of one million doses of Sinovac vaccine from China arrived in the Philippines around 7:00 a.m. Thursday (June 10).

On board Cebu Pacific Flight 57671, the vaccines were welcomed by members of the government’s vaccine team led by Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 2.

Later tonight, an additional 2.28 million doses of Pfizer-BioNtech COVID-19 vaccine from the World Health Organization’s (WHO) COVAX facility are also set to arrive, marking the biggest single-day delivery of COVID-19 vaccine supply in the Philippines.

Pagbabakuna sa A4 group sa ilang LGU, tigil muna dahil sa limitadong vaccine supply – DOH

Robie de Guzman   •   June 9, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Pansamantalang itinigil ng ilang local government unit (LGU) ang pagbabakuna para sa mga indibidwal na sakop ng A4 priority group dahil sa kakulangan sa supply ng COVID-19 vaccine.

Ayon sa Department of Health (DOH), sa susunod na linggo pa inaasahang maide-deploy sa mga LGU ang karagdagang bakuna na darating sa bansa ngayong linggo.

Ang vaccine supply na para sa A4 sector ay binibili ng pamahalaan mula sa vaccine manufacturers at hindi mula sa COVAX Facility.

Batay sa panuntunan ng pamahalaan, para lamang sa A1, A2 at A3 sectors ang mga bakunang mula sa COVAX Facility.

“So nararanasan po natin ito na pagtigil sa pagbabakuna dahil na rin sa ating limitadong supply. Yung ating dumating na bakuna noong nakarang linggo ay in progress na ng delivery at itong pong linggong ito, bukas ay may dadating din po tayong karagdagang bakuna at ito po ide-deploy kaagad sa ating mga vaccination centers,” ani Dr. Napoleon Arevalo, Director IV ng DOH.

“In fact meron tayong mga timelines na ito ay dapat binibigay kaagad natin once the country receives it to our local governments and ang dictum po natin once they received the vaccine,” dagdag pa niya.

Noong Lunes pormal na sinimulan ang pagbabakuna sa A4 sector na kinabibilangan ng economic frontline workers.

Tinatayang 20 milyon hanggang 30 milyon ang kabilang sa economic frontliners. Mahigit sa 29,000 sa mga ito ang nakatanggap na ng first dose habang nasa 6,269 ang fully vaccinated na.

Ayon kay Arevalo, may natanggap rin silang ulat na may ilang lugar sa National Capital Region (NCR) Plus 8 ang nagsuspindi ng pagbabakuna dahil kaunti lang ang natanggap nilang supply kahit mabilis ang kanilang vaccine rollout.

“To handle, to store and inoculate the vaccines. Kapag mabilis kayong magbakuna talagang mapapabilis din po ang pag-allocate. Importante din po na ang ating A1, 2 and 3 are still our priority habang binabakunahan natin yung A4,” ani Arevalo.

At dahil hindi pa rin sapat ang supply ng bakuna sa ngayon, nakatuon pa lang ang pagbabakakuna sa mga lugar na may mataas ang kaso gaya sa Metro Manila, Bulacan, Pampanga, Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal, Metro Cebu at Metro Davao, na tinatawag na NCR Plus 8.

Mabibigyan naman aniya ang ibang mga lugar kapag dumating na ang iba pang supply ng COVID-19 vaccine sa bansa ngayong Hunyo

“Kailangan maubos iyong kanilang mga bakuna lalo na iyong frist doses, kailangan ma- check din nila ang pagbabakuna ng kanilang second doses kaya kung may mga natitira pa these are for the second doses,” ang pahayag ni Arevalo.

“Inaasahan natin ngayong Hunyo may dadating na bakuna na tinatayang 10 million doses sana po ay maidagdag na po natin ito sa ating mga A4 segment of the population,” dagdag pa niya.

Sa kasalukyang 6.3 milyon na COVID-19 vaccines na ang naiturok sa mga Pilipinong nasa A1 hanggang A4 sector; 1.6 milyon naman dito ang nakakumpleto na ng kanilang COVID-19 shot. – RRD (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Aiko Miguel)


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