Now that the supply of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccines in the Philippines are tight, some local experts see the contribution of vaccine brand mixing to the same person to fight the pandemic.
It is now feared that the second dose of the Sputnik V vaccine will not be given immediately to those who have been given the first dose within the allotted 21 days. As a result, the delivery of an additional 50,000 doses of the said drug in the Philippines has now been delayed.
“Isa sa mga challenges natin ngayon is ‘yung supply… ‘Yung brand mixing can help,” said Dr. Isagani Padolina, member of the DOST Vaccine Expert Panel (VEP), Friday.
“So if you have the ability to replace that second dose with another brand… It will still be effective. So we have studies ongoing for those.”
The Department of Health first said in May that they were already drafting rules regarding vaccine brand mixing.
Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said that vaccine brand mixing has already been found on a theoretical basis. One of the countries implementing “brand mixing” is the United Kingdom. However, the government is still studying it.
COVID-19 vaccine brand mixing can help vs delayed deliveries – experts
The supply of CoronaVac vaccines by drug manufacturer Sinovac in the Philippines was also recently cut off after failing to submit the required documents. However, it was also distributed after such deficiency was given.
In the last report of presidential spokesperson Harry Roque on Thursday, up to 16.2 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines have arrived in the Philippines, including 2 million Sinovac doses that just arrived in the country yesterday.
According to Dr. Rontgene Solante, who is also a member of the VEP, there is no need to worry immediately, even if the second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine is injected a little late.
Like the Pfizer vaccine, Solante said the efficacy rate of Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine is also high. However, he said that it would be hazardous if the difference between the first and second doses were six months to a year.