(UPDATE): Sputnik V delivery delayed anew; netizens worry over stalled second dose

Published August 10, 2021, 7:37 PM

by Martin Sadongdong

Some social media users took to social media to express worry about the non-inclusion of the delivery of Russian vaccine Sputnik V this month, saying some of them have yet to receive their second dose.

Vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. (left) and Russian Ambassador to the Philippines Marat Pavlov welcome the 132,200 doses of Sputnik V vaccines that arrived at Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Pasay City on July 9, 2021. (Photo courtesy of National Task Force Against COVID-19)

In a text message to the Manila Bulletin Tuesday night, August 10, vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. confirmed that the delivery of Sputnik V was indeed delayed.

“We are now making a memorandum on the delay of Sputnik V with DOH [Department of Health]. We will make a public pronouncement,” he said.

On Monday night, Galvez reported to President Duterte that a total of 22.7 million doses of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccines were secured by the country from various manufacturers for the month of August.

More than 4.74 million doses were already delivered during the first week while the remaining 17.98 million are expected to arrive in the remaining three weeks.

The brands that are set to be delivered to the country include Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Sinovac, and Moderna. The COVAX facility will also donate three million doses of vaccines.

Netizens could not help but ask the Manila Bulletin why there were no available deliveries for Sputnik V this month.

One of them who appeared to be a resident of Cainta, Rizal asked: “So walang (So there are no) Sputnik coming this August? #OneCainta what is going to [happen] to those whose second doses have been delayed for almost a month already?”

Another netizen said the seocnd dose of some residents in Cebu City have also been delayed because there were no available vaccines: “‘Yung Sputnik? (How about Sputnik?) Nade-delay na po ‘yung second dose ng karamihan dito sa Cebu City (The second dose of many people here in Cebu City are getting delayed).”

There was no immediate explanation from the National Task Force (NTF) Against COVID-19 why there was no available delivery of the Russian vaccine for the Philippines this month.

However, this was not the first time that the Gamaleya Research Institute, the vaccine manufacturer, has stalled the delivery of its vaccine to the country.

In July, the scheduled delivery of 170,000 doses of Sputnik V on the first week of that month had been stalled for several days due to logistical issues. Eventually, the jabs were transported in two batches on July 9 and 10.

The delivery of 100,000 doses of Sputnik V on the first week of June also got delayed due to issues on logistics. The delivery was completed on June 11.

Currently, the country has already received 38.6 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines including 350,000 doses of Sputnik V.