Vaccine czar Carlito Galvez asserted that no bus was missed or that the ball fell when it came to government negotiations with various pharmaceutical companies to ensure that the Philippines can get the COVID-19 vaccine.
This is despite allegations that Health Secretary Francisco Duque III neglected the agreement with the American company Pfizer, followed by the call of Sen. Manny Pacquiao for him to resign as secretary.
“No ‘bus’ was missed, or no ‘ball’ was dropped because we are focused on our main goal, and that is, to secure an equitable share of the vaccines,” said Galvez.
According to Galvez, negotiations with various manufacturers are already in the “advanced stage.”
He also said that the allegations are baseless, which instead of helping will further detract from the goal of getting a safe vaccine for Filipinos.
“These unfounded accusations and unnecessary noise that may derail us from pursuing our goal of securing safe and effective vaccines,” said Galvez.
Sinovac and Clover Biopharmaceuticals of China, and Janssen of America are still in the process of submitting an application to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Galvez: No one neglected vaccine negotiations
According to FDA Director-General Eric Domingo, this is all they have so far, and no manufacturer has yet applied for emergency use authorization of the vaccine.
Domingo also explained what it means when the vaccine reaches the FDA level.
“Itong 3 ito na nag-apply for clinical trial, dumaan naman sa vaccine expert panel ito. So tinignan ‘yong phase 1 and phase 2 trials. And convinced naman sila na medyo maganda naman ‘yong safety and efficacy profile nila. Kaya pinayagan na mag-clinical trial phase 3 dito sa atin,” said Domingo.
When it comes to the World Health Organization (WHO) solidarity trial, Domingo said that the organization has not yet submitted any documents to them.
WHO is expected to submit the documents to the FDA in January, and the trials were also targeted to begin that month.
But it may take up to 4 weeks before the FDA approves the documents because the agency will still review them.