The Department of Health (DOH) prepares to present its plan on COVID-19 vaccination implementation to the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID), Thursday.
“The DOH will present the vaccine implementation plan sa IATF within this week or early next week,” DOH’s Undersecretary Eric Domingo said in an interview on GMA Network’s Unang Hirit.
Domingo added that the DOH and the Department of Science and Technology discussing the establishment of cold chain facilities where the vaccines will be stored.
“Nagme-meet na rin araw-araw ang DOST, ang DOH. Pati ang private sector tutulong na sa atin to make sure na meron tayong cold chain facilities kung ano man ang vaccine na mabili natin,” Domingo said.
“’Yung supplies kasama na ‘yun, kapag nag-bid ‘yan. At saka kailangan may pa-extra pa na mga syringe, needles, alcohol, ‘yung bag na lalagayan na dapat thermally insulated,” he added.
The DOH official noted that COVID-19 vaccination would require vast operation considering that millions of Filipinos are to be immunized.
“Napakalaking supply chain ang operation nito. Magbabakuna tayo ng 20 million to 100 million Filipinos,” he said.
DOH to present vaccine implementation plan to IATF
The coronavirus vaccine will be available to the public in the first months of 2021, according to the secretary of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST).
In the virtual forum, DOST Sec. Fortunato dela Peña that the manufacture and the clinical trial process of the foreign vaccine will take longer.
“We still are looking at the end of trials in the second quarter of 2021. And between the end of trials, to the FDA’s approval for application, for use, and the actual vaccination, mass vaccination, it will still take some time. Our original estimate of mid-2021 is still the most optimistic,” said Dela Peña.
“Mid-2021 is optimistic. I suspect we’ll have to live with our current normal for the full of 2021. And the government does have to prioritize. Kanino unang bibigyan ng bakuna,” added Dr. Beaver Tamesis, president of the Philippines’ Pharmaceutical and Healthcare Association.
The House of Representatives has proposed to add P5.5 billion for the COVID-19 vaccine purchase, while Senator Panfilo Lacson wanted an increase of P10 billion.