By Arwen Pascua
MANILA — Health Secretary Francisco Duque III announced late Sunday the supposed arrival Monday (01 March 2021) of 525,600 doses of AstraZeneca anti-coronavirus vaccine was postponed and will be delayed by a week.
Duque confirmed the postponement of the British-made vaccines which are part of the first batch of doses from the COVAX facility citing a global supply shortage.
“There’s just news that it will be postponed because the WHO (World Health Organization) said that there is a problem with the supply,” Duque said.
The COVAX facility is a global initiative led by the World Health Organization which aims to ensure equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines.
Meanwhile, Vaccine Czar Carlito Galvez, Jr. also confirmed the postponement of the vaccines’s arrival.
“We have to understand, nakita natin yung AstraZeneca at ibang vaccines, pinagagawan sa Europe at sa area ng mga developing countries. Naiintindihan naman natin. Makakapaghintay naman po tayo,” Galvez said in an interview.
Yesterday, President Rodrigo Duterte together with the Chinese Ambassador to the Philippine Huang Xillian welcomed the arrival of 600,000 doses of Sinovac vaccines donated by China, the first batch of COVID-19 vaccines to arrive in the country since the pandemic started in March last year. (AI/MTVN)