The Pasay City government has inked a deal with British-Swedish pharmaceutical firm AstraZeneca for the purchase of 275,000 doses of coronavirus vaccines to be given free to its residents.
In an interview over DZBB Wednesday (January 13), Pasay City Mayor Imelda Calixto-Rubiano said the city is allotting about P250 million for the vaccine purchase.
Two doses are needed for the AstraZeneca vaccine to be effective. Each dose costs $10 or around P500.
“Nakipaglagda po ako nung Linggo pa po ng tripartite agreement with AstraZeneca, ating national government, at Department of Health through our local government (I signed a tripartite agreement with AstraZeneca, our national government, and the Department of Health through our local government last Sunday),” Rubiano said.
“Kaya lang dahil may scarcity po ang bakuna sa buong mundo, paunti-unti muna ang pinapayagan po sa bawat LGU (Because there is still a short supply of the vaccine, we are only allowed to order limited doses),” she added. Aside from AstraZeneca, the Pasay LGU is also considering buying vaccines from other companies.
The Pasay City mayor said the LGU chose AstraZeneca because of its affordability and it is easier to store compared to other COVID-19 vaccines.
“Madali po kasi yung handling. Kahit ordinary refrigerator ay pwede pong i-store yung bakuna. Yung efficacy maganda rin, at mura lang din ang halaga nya (The vaccine is easy to handle. It can be stored in an ordinary refrigerator. Its efficacy is quite impressive, and it’s also cheaper),” Rubiano said.
Pasay City expects to roll out AstraZeneca vaccines by the second quarter of 2021.
The mayor assured that the local government will prioritize medical frontliners once the vaccines become available.