US welcomes delivery of 193,050 doses of Pfizer BioNTech vaccines to PH

Published May 10, 2021, 11:28 PM

by Roy Mabasa

The United States on Monday welcomed the successful delivery of 193,050 doses of the US-made Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to the Philippines.

The 193,050 doses of the US-made Pfizer-BioNTech  COVID-19 vaccines being unloaded at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport, Monday night. (U.S. Embassy Manila)

This is the first tranche of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines and it came just two days after the arrival of 2,030,400 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, bringing total COVAX deliveries to the Philippines to 2,673,000 doses.

The United States is by far the largest contributor to the COVAX effort, funding one in five vaccinations in the Philippines provided by the facility.

US Embassy Economic Counselor Chip Gamble joined Philippine officials and other stakeholders in welcoming the first arrival of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, touted as one of the safest and most effective vaccines in the world against COVID-19.

“I am proud that this extraordinarily safe and effective vaccine, developed through U.S. scientific ingenuity, will protect Filipinos. As we fight the pandemic together, the United States will continue to support the Philippines’ vaccination and COVID-19 mitigation efforts,” said US Embassy Chargé d’Affaires John Law.

Used vials of Pfizer-BioNTech’s Comirnaty COVID-19 vaccine (Christof STACHE / AFP / MANILA BULLETIN)

This is the fourth shipment of vaccines to the Philippines made available through the COVAX Advance Market Commitment, a global initiative to support equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines.

The US has donated Php97.2 billion ($2 billion) to COVAX to ensure that the Philippines and other countries receive COVID-19 vaccines, and has committed to providing an additional $2 billion.

In total, COVAX will provide 44 million doses to Filipinos. Upcoming COVAX deliveries from Pfizer will total over 2.3 million.

The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine was jointly developed by American pharmaceutical company Pfizer Inc. and German biotechnology company BioNTech SE. It was the first to receive emergency use authorization from the World Health Organization and is 95 percent effective in preventing COVID-19 illness, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.