The government reiterated on Sunday that local government units (LGUs) prepare for the arrival of more vaccines for the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).
This, after the government concluded an agreement for the procurement of 40 million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine of Pfizer-Moderna.
National Task Force against Covid-19 chief implementer Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. reiterated that preparedness on the part of LGUs is “imperative” with the confirmed procured supply from Pfizer.
“We again emphasize for LGUs to ensure third party logistics and cold chain service providers for very sensitive vaccines like Pfizer, Moderna, and Sputnik V. We don’t want any vaccine to be wasted because of spoilage and mishandling,” the vaccine czar said.
Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines have storage temperature requirements of minus 80 to minus 60 degrees centigrade while Moderna and Sputnik require minus 20.
Galvez said the government will deploy the procured Pfizer doses to all provinces and regions.
“We intend to deploy the Pfizer, Sputnik V, and Moderna vaccines as soon as possible and distribute it even to rural areas and communities. However, this will not be possible if the receiving LGU is not ready to handle these types of vaccines,” said Galvez.
He said the scheduled delivery of Pfizer and Moderna will coincide with the opening of the national immunization program to the general population, including those under the 12 to 15 age bracket.
However, the NTF clarified that the adult population and the vulnerable sector will still be given priority in the vaccination program.
Galvez said the vaccination of 12 to 15-year-olds may be conducted in the latter part of the year, as the country increases its vaccine inventory and completes the inoculation of the priority sectors. SOVEREIGNPH