MAYOR Sara Duterte said on Monday the city is trying to negotiate a supply agreement with the Maryland-based Novavax Inc. for the limited COVID-19 vaccine.
The city’s vaccine team tried to negotiate with Johnson & Johnson but the company does not sell directly to local government units. Meanwhile, Duterte said they have no scheduled meeting with Beijing-based Sinovac for the procurement of vaccines.
“Ang na istorya nato is ang Astrazeneca, and duna na tay orders sa ilaha. Ang ilahang sulti is that 3rd quarter ang ilang possible nga delivery (We talked with Astrazeneca and we already have orders with them. They told us that the possible delivery would be in the third quarter),” she said.
She also said that they also talked to Novavax “because they are willing to sell directly to the LGUs.”
Duterte said the arrangement would be similar to Astrazeneca but they are still processing the papers.
Also, the Mayor said the city government will cover any complications following the vaccination since the vaccine makers imposed a conditionality to take liability away from them in case of adverse reactions.
“Voluntary ang atong pagbakuna, dili siya mandatory. Allowed ang mga tao nga mag research ug mga materials and magbasa sa mga public health experts sa bakuna para makabuhat sila ug decision (Our vaccination program is not mandatory. The public is allowed to research materials from public health experts on vaccines before they make a decision),” she added.
Recently, the city assured that tmore COVID-19 vaccines are expected to arrive in Davao City in the next few weeks, including those by Chinese biopharmaceutical company Sinovac and British-Swedish biotech firm AstraZeneca.
As of March 11, the city received an additional 1,200 vials of Sinovac’s CoronaVac from Davao Region’s vaccine arsenal, which brings to 4,200 the total doses of Sinovac vaccines delivered at A. Mabini Elementary School, the city’s first operating vaccination hub.
On the same day, around 2,050 private healthcare workers were inoculated.
With the remaining 2,150 vaccines on hand, the city government targeted to complete the immunization of the listed 2,400 medical workers from tertiary private hospitals on March 14.
The city’s vaccination drive will start with the healthcare workers and other medical frontliners from the private and public healthcare sectors. Other frontline and essential personnel will also be prioritized in the coming vaccines as the immunization program of the Davao LGU continues.
Meanwhile, the mayor also warned against individuals selling vaccines from dubious sources.
“The issue about the vaccines on the black market started last year. We have to keep in mind that the vaccine is facilitated and made available only to the national government. If there is an organization, person, or group offering these [fake] vaccines, you should raise red flags and think about it,” Duterte said.
She said only the Department of Health and the local government units have access to the vaccine. If somebody would offer it, you better be cautious because it might only contain water and, obviously, it is fake,” she added.
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