June 1, 2023

The national government is not delaying the multi-party agreements (MPAs) with the local government units and the private sector on the procurement of Covid-19 vaccines, National Task Force against Covid-19 chief implementer Sec. Carlito Galvez, Jr. said.
Galvez said some manufacturers were no longer interested in pushing MPAs with the private sector and LGUs and wanted to transact with only one party for smoother logistical requirements.
“Sabi kasi nila pag maraming kausap, it will entail an enlargement of their personnel, at saka medyo napakahirap ng logistics,” Galvez said, noting China’s Sinovac and Russia’s Gamaleya Research Institute intended to prioritize orders from the national government.
“‘Yung clarification po namin ay hindi po namin hino-hold ‘yung tripartite agreement, hindi po namin dini-delay. Ang ginagawa lang po namin is ‘yung due diligence. Katulad po nang ginagawa ng DOH,” he added.
Moderna and AstraZeneca companies have stopped accepting new orders for the “first wave” of Covid-19 vaccine procurement through the tripartite agreement, Galvez said.
“They will accept orders for the second wave procurement, ibig sabihin ibang produkto ‘yun ,” he added.
The second wave procurement includes “booster shots” and “second generation” vaccines or those upgraded jabs that are effective against emerging variants.
Galvez added American manufacturers Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson “are currently not open for the multi-party arrangement.”
The Health Technology Assessment Council is evaluating India’s Covaxin developed by Bharat Biotech company, as its price is thrice higher than the widely-used vaccine brands.
“Binibili din po ng mga LGU ‘yan. Gusto natin na titingnan natin ‘yung cost-effectiveness kasi masyadong mataas ang kanyang presyo,” Galvez said.
Saying public funds are used for the procurement, Galvez said they wanted to protect LGUs from getting flagged by the Commission on Audit.
Galvez said the emergency use authorization for Covavax jabs developed by manufacturers Novavax and Serum Institute of India is not yet approved.
“We are supporting the tripartite agreement but we want that magkaroon lang ng enough volume for us, at the same time, ‘yung price po na ibibigay sa atin is talagang ‘yung tinatawag nating very decent price,” he said. – PNA