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With no FDA approval, Malacañang signs deal with Sinovac vaccine for 25 million doses

With no FDA approval, Malacañang signs deal with Sinovac vaccine for 25 million doses

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  • Why did the government sign a deal for a vaccine with a less than 60 percent efficacy rate and no emergency use authorization, Sen. Ping Lacson has asked
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On Jan. 11, Malacañang announced that the Philippines has secured a shipment of 25 million doses of Sinovac Biotech’s COVID-19 vaccine. The first 50,000 doses are expected to arrive in the country by next month. 

While this may seem like good news, the vaccine has not yet secured emergency use authorization (EUA) from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Sen Panfilo Lacson revealed during a Senate hearing on Jan. 11. 

“Why did you conclude a contract for 25 million doses [of the Sinovac vaccine] when there’s no EUA yet (from the FDA)? Lacson asked.

During the hearing, FDA director general Eric Domingo stated on record that the Chinese-based pharmaceutical company has yet to apply for an EUA and “might (do so) next week or very soon.”

The Sinovac vaccine also has yet to start clinical trials in the Philippines and has shown a less than 60 percent efficacy rate in its late-stage trials in Brazil.

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