Novavax applies for EUA in the Philippines

Marje Pelayo   •   August 9, 2021   •   492

MANILA, Philippines — American biotechnology firm Novavax has submitted its application for emergency use authorization (EUA) of its COVID-19 vaccine in the Philippines.

Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Director-General Eric Domingo confirmed this on Monday (August 9) during the Laging Handa briefing adding that the agency has begun evaluating Novavax’s application.

“Karamihan naman po ng listahan natin ay na-submit na nila at inumpisahan na po natin ang evaluation niyan both for the manufacturing side at safety and efficacy side,” he said.

“Meron pa silang kulang na requirements na kailangan nilang i-submit sa atin bago tayo gumawa ng desisyon dito,” he added.

The official said it takes 21 days before a complete application is approved.

Domingo noted that Novavax showed an efficacy rate that is very similar to existing vaccines in the Philippines which is 80% to 90% efficacy.

However, the firm’s application is for use to 18 years old and older.

Nearly 2 million AstraZeneca COVID-19 vax doses for private sector arrive in PH

Robie de Guzman   •   December 30, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Another batch of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine doses has arrived in the Philippines, the National Task Force (NTF) against COVID-19 said.

The shipment containing a total of 1,981,500 doses of Astrazeneca vaccines arrived in Manila on Wednesday, December 29.

These vaccine shots procured by the private sector will most likely be used as booster shots for the local government units and the private sector, according to Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion.

The latest shipment brings to 210,023,540 the total COVID-19 vaccine doses the country has received since February.

Prior to this, a total of 2,005,300 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine were delivered to the Philippines on Tuesday.

The last batch completes the 17 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccine secured through a tripartite agreement with the national government and vaccine manufacturers.

Meanwhile, a total of 1,357,300 doses of the Moderna vaccine also arrived at NAIA 1 around 1:20 a.m. on Wednesday.

NTF chief implementer Carlito Galvez Jr. said the Philippines has so far received over 200 million COVID-19 vaccine doses since February.

By the end of 2021, the NTF said the Philippines is expecting to have a total of 210 million doses of various vaccine brands.

The task force earlier said this supply will be used to further scale up the government’s vaccination campaign to achieve the target to inoculate more than 70 million people by 2022.

Over 47.8 million individuals in the Philippines are so far fully vaccinated against COVID-19, while over 60.8 million individuals have at least received their first dose.

Nearly 7.5 million Filipinos inoculated in 2nd nat’l COVID-19 vaccination drive – Palace

Robie de Guzman   •   December 27, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Close to 7.5 million Filipinos were inoculated against COVID-19 during the second leg of the national vaccination drive held from December 15 to 23, Malacañang said Monday.

Acting presidential spokesperson and Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said that as of December 26, a total of 7,497,802 doses were administered during the second iteration of the vaccination drive.

The figure has exceeded the government’s initial target of 7,326,613 jabs for the second phase of the simultaneous vaccination drive.

“We thank our kababayans for their cooperation and for the steps they have taken to protect themselves, their families, and their communities,” said Nograles, who is also co-chair of the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF).

“We likewise commend our medical frontliners, vaccinators, and volunteers for their sacrifice, dedication and service to the country,” he added.

For the second vaccination drive, Region 4-A recorded the highest number of cumulative jabs with 1,244,191, followed by Region 3 with 919,822, and Region 6 with 658,805 administered jabs.

Meanwhile, Region 1 recorded the highest percentage of jabs administered compared to its target, with 561,858 jabs or 277.84 percent of its 202,224 target jabs to be administered.

Region 2 followed with 232.57 percent of their target, while Region 10 accomplished 173.27 percent of its vaccination target.

Nograles renewed his call to still unvaccinated against COVID-19 to get their shots amid the threat of Omicron variant.

“We must continue to be vigilant and alert by observing the minimum public health standards on top of getting vaccinated,” he said.

Meanwhile, National Task Force Against COVID-19 chief implementer Carlito Galvez Jr. assured there are enough vaccine supplies to achieve the government’s target to fully vaccinate 77 million Filipinos by the first quarter of 2022.

Galvez added that the government’s priority is still to vaccinate the unvaccinated, including the pediatric population.

Pagbibigay ng COVID-19 vaccine 4th dose, pag-aaralan pa – VEP

Robie de Guzman   •   December 24, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Wala pang plano sa ngayon ang Vaccine Experts Panel (VEP) sa bansa na magrekomenda ng ika-apat na dose ng COVID-19 vaccine.

Sa ngayon ay third dose at booster shots pa lamang ang ibinibigay sa mga nakakumpleto na ng primary series ng bakuna.

Pero ayon kay Dr. Nina Gloriani, na miyembro ng Technical Working Group for COVID-19 vaccines, posibleng sa susunod na taon ay sisimulan na rin ng VEP ang pagsilip sa hakbang na ito.

“We aren’t talking about the 4th dose yet pero we are hoping that the 3rd dose would be enough kasi kapag nag-boost ka matagal na rin iyong baba niyan e. So we will study pa rin kung ano iyong waning kasi wala pang data gaano sa booster na durability, iyong duration nung protection e kabibigay lang halos in any parts of the world,” ani Gloriani.

“So maybe by next year we will know after 6 months mataas pa rin o nag-wane na then we will have to consider,” dagdag pa niya.

Sa ngayon aniya, prayoridad pa rin ng pamahalaan ang pagbabakuna sa mga hindi pa nakatatanggap ng first dose.

Batay sa datos, mas mabuti na ang sitwasyon ngayon sa bansa kumpara noong nakalipas na taon dahil sa bumababang bilang ng mga naiimpeksyon.

Pero hindi pa rin aniya dapat maging kampante ang publiko dahil na rin sa patuloy na banta ng COVID-19 at mga variant nito gaya ng Omicron.

Paalala rin nito sa publiko na mag-doble ingat ngayong holiday season lalo’t marami ang lumalabas para mamili at magdaraos ng mga salu-salo.

Payo ni Gloriani, limitahan pa rin ang mga pagtitipon sa mga bakunado nang bisita at seguruhing nasusunod ang COVID-19 health at safety protocols.

Hinimok rin ng VEP ang mga nakatanggap na ng primary series tatlong buwan ang nakalilipas na magpabakuna na ng booster shot bago pumasok ang 2022. (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Aiko Miguel)

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