1.3 million AstraZeneca doses for private sector to arrive in June—Concepcion

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, May 5) — The private sector is set to receive the first batch of vaccines it procured for its inoculation program in June, Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship and Go Negosyo founder Joey Concepcion said.

During a briefing on Tuesday, Concepcion said 1.3 million of the 17 million AstraZeneca vaccine doses private firms procured are expected to arrive next month and is seen to benefit around 100 companies.

Itong mga pinakamalaking kumpanya nauna ditong bumili ng AstraZeneca, mga conglomerates natin katulad ng (Our big companies who first purchased AstraZeneca like) ICTSI, Ayala, SM, Lucio Tan, Megaworld, lahat iyan, kasama rin ang (all these, including) Philippine Franchising Association, Philippine Retailers Association,” Concepcion said, adding that the next batch will arrive July onwards.

To help the government in its inoculation program, private companies participated in tripartite deals that were able to purchase 17 million doses of AstraZeneca’s vaccines.

Concepcion earlier said that the private sector will fund its own immunization program. Zuellig Pharmaceutical Corporation was also tapped as the logistics service provider, he said.

Companies are also given the option to choose their vaccination implementer, he added.

The Presidential Adviser also stressed the need for every Filipino to get a vaccine, which will be key in reopening the domestic economy.

“The only solution to our pandemic problem and our economic problem is the vaccine. May mga tao rin diyan ayaw magpabakuna pero (There are people who do not want to be vaccinated but) we are at war with COVID-19… Wala ng ibang solusyon kung hindi ang bakuna (There is no other solution, but the vaccine),” he said.

Currently, the Philippines has received over 4 million coronavirus shots, most of which are China’s Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine. Close to 2 million of these were already administered since the rollout started in March with healthcare workers, followed by senior citizens and people with comorbidity.

By the end of the year, the government hopes to vaccine up to 70 million Filipino to achieve herd immunity.