PASAY CITY (1 SEPTEMBER 2021)— More provinces throughout the country, particularly those experiencing spikes in COVID-19 cases, will soon get their allocation of Pfizer vaccines.

This was the assurance given by Secretary Carlito G. Galvez, Jr., vaccine czar and National Task Force against COVID-19 chief implementer, during the arrival of 703,170 doses of government-procured Pfizer vaccines on Wednesday evening.

“We wanted all municipalities (to) have that sort of dry run, so that when the majority of the Pfizer vaccines will come by October, more or less 10 million will be delivered each month during October, November, and December, they (LGUs) are already knowledgeable on how to handle critical supplies like the vaccines of Pfizer,” Galvez said.

Pfizer vaccines are among the most delicate of COVID-19 vaccines, as they require a storage temperature of negative 80 degrees celsius.

Of the 703,170 doses of Pfizer vaccines, 51,480 shots have already been sent to Cebu City, while another 51,480 doses will be shipped to Davao City.

The remaining 600,120 doses were sent straight to the PharmaServ Express’ cold-chain facility in Marikina for temporary storage.

This latest shipment brings the total number of government-procured Pfizer deliveries to the country to 2,823,700 doses.

Over 4 million more doses of Pfizer vaccines are expected to arrive in September as part of the 40 million doses procured by the government.

As of September 1, the country has already received a total of 52,603,760 vaccine doses from various manufacturers.

For his part, US Embassy Chargé d’Affaires John C. Law noted that the latest shipment of Pfizer vaccines will enable the national government to ramp up the country’s inoculation rate and provide more people with an extra layer of protection against COVID-19.

“Every time we see a delivery of these vaccines, with hundreds of thousands, or millions of vaccines coming in, that means hundreds of thousands of Filipinos in a few days are going to be better protected against this pandemic,” Law said.

The US government official believes that after the Pfizer vaccine receives full authorization in the United States, it won’t be long before the company applies for the same approval in the Philippines.

“I think they will (apply). I think all the (vaccine) producers are going to cooperate with the FDAs (Food and Drug Administration) in the respective countries, to ensure that all the safety protocols are followed and that the vaccines are authorized for use,” Law said.

“The American and Filipino people are friends, so we are going to continue all that we possibly can, working with Secretary Galvez and his team, to help the Philippines confront this pandemic,” he added.

Meanwhile, Galvez maintained that with the steady arrival of larger vaccine shipments, the country is still on track to achieving population protection by year-end.

“We are still aiming for a high target of 70% (of our target population) by the end of December,” Galvez said.END