Gov’t to reveal vaccine purchase terms after talks

National, News

The government will disclose and reveal the anti-Covid vaccines’ price list to the public once negotiations are done,

National Task Force Against Covid-19 deputy chief implementor Secretary Vince Dizon recently said the government has various ongoing talks with vaccine developers.

“When these negotiations have been concluded, issues such as prices and volumes will be disclosed to the general public, so I think, we all just really need to keep our eyes on the ball and focus on ensuring that we have access to the very, very limited supply in the global market,” Dizon said in an interview over ANC.

“The prices will be transparently disclosed when the negotiations are done. As you very well know, Secretary Carlito Galvez has repeatedly said he is bound by this confidentiality agreement with all vaccine manufacturers, not just Sinovac. All of them require confidentiality while negotiations are taking place,” he added/

Dizon assured that once negotiations end and terms are finalized, all details of the negotiations will be disclosed to the public.

“There’s so much information coming out, some accurate, some are not, so we just have to be really careful like what Vaccine czar Galvez has repeatedly saidm and what he is committed to do is to ensure that we have adequate supply and these negotiations are going to be transparent,” he added.

Dizon emphasized that the government is committed to providing all Filipinos with safe and effective vaccines. “Right now, the main goal is to be sure that given the limited supply of vaccine worldwide, we can access the supply from different vaccine manufacturers,” he said.

The government has ongoing negotiations with seven pharmaceutical companies including Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson, Sinovac, Gamaleya, and Novavax.

“These seven vaccine companies have been recommended initially by the vaccine expert panel for the government to begin negotiation with to ensure access to the supply,” he said, adding that the government’s goal is to get advanced access to vaccine jabs given its limited supply.

“So when the time comes that all of these vaccines, whether all or some of them have been approved by our  panel of experts and our Food and Drug Administration (FDA), we will be ready to purchase and administer them to the priority sectors and the general public,” he added.

In the government’s plan to combat the pandemic, Dizon said there is a need to adopt a decentralized approach. “We need to employ and utilize all available resources not just from the national government, but also from the local government units (LGUs), as well as the private sector. This I think was the major reason why our testing capacity was drastically improved after the initial challenges early on, in March, April, and May of last year,” he pointed out.

Dizon said the government will do the same clear policy of a whole-of-nation approach to involve every stakeholder in the rollout of the vaccination campaign.

“The narional government, LGUs, and the private sector are working together for the implementation of the national immunization program, that will be done through a prioritization scheme. This is part of the equitable distribution of a verym very limited supply of vaccine throughout the world,” he stressed.

Dizon said the government is currently coordinating with the private sector and LGUs to utilize all available assets and resources for the vaccination rollout, to ensure the swift vaccination of as many Filipinos as much possible.

The initial vaccination program might start by the third or fourth week of February, he said.

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