Gov’t assures equitable
National Task Force Against Covid-19 (NTF) chief implementer and vaccine czar Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. on Thursday said the government, alongside local government units (LGUs) and the private sector, are working together to ramp up efforts in vaccine procurement.
“We are doing everything with integrity and honesty, everything on what we do. Rest assured that we are doing its best to ensure your health and safety, put an end to this pandemic, and revive our nation’s economy,” Galvez said during the virtual ceremonial of the signing of the tripartite agreement with the private sector, LGUs, and vaccine maker AstraZeneca.
Galvez cited the invaluable contribution of LGUs and the private sector in the government’s efforts to push through with negotiations for the equitable acquisition of Covid-19 vaccines as it signed another tripartite agreement with the British-Swedish biopharmaceutical company AstraZeneca.
“As we formalize our partnership, we believe that the implementation of our National Vaccine Program will not only be less daunting but also more efficient and strategic because of the invaluable contribution of LGUs and the private sector,” he said.
Galvez said the government has secured 17 million doses of AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccines.
“The contract we have right now is only to unlock the supply, we will have another agreement wherein the nitty-gritty of the vaccine shipment, storage, and also distribution will be undertaken,” he said
Galvez said they will be signing a separate tripartite supply agreement once stocks of the vaccine are ready for deployment.
“What we negotiated with the vaccine maker is that—this is a long-term commitment, so this is after-sales phase 4—as required by our universal health system,” he said.
“With this, we will make sure that the vaccine will be coming here there is an integrated coordination between the vaccine maker the LGU, the national government, and the private sector,” he added.
The government is set to inspect all available cold chain repositories nationwide next week, to make sure the country is ready for the vaccine deployment once the supplies become available.
“That’s why we are now coordinating with the consortium so that we will make sure that all the vaccine whether the 2°C–8°C or the -70°C and -20°C will be taken care of,” said Galvez.
Galvez said the government is also avoiding vaccine wastage.
“We have seen reports that there is 30-percent wastage in some areas in Europe. With the acute shortage of the vaccine, we cannot afford wastage,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Makati city government is set to purchase one million doses of Covid-19 vaccine through a tripartite agreement with the national government and AstraZeneca.
Mayor Abby Binay said these vaccines will cover the inoculation of the city’s front-liners, taxpayers, and the city’s economic partners in the business sector.
“We intend to vaccinate all Makatizens, including real property owners, business owners, and non-registered voters who reside in the city. We want them to be safe from the virus, and we are aiming for 100-percent vaccination in the city,” she said.
Binay said the city government is set to launch an information campaign, alongside medical experts on infectious diseases and vaccination, to ensure that all doubts, concerns, and questions on the Covid-19 vaccine will be answered.