Palace: Arrival of Sputnik V vaccines delayed; gov't targets May delivery

The arrival of the first batch of Russian-made coronavirus vaccines won't push through this month due to logistical concerns, Malacañang announced Wednesday, April 28.

(Photo by Handout / Russian Direct Investment Fund / AFP / MANILA BULLETIN)

The government instead aims to secure the delivery of the Sputnik V vaccine doses developed by Russia's Gamaleya Research Institute by next month, according to Presidential spokesman Harry Roque.

The Sputnik V vaccines, which recorded over 90 percent efficacy rate based on clinical trials, require a minus 18-20 degree Celsius cold chain to stay stable.

"We confirm that logistical challenges resulted in the delay of the arrival of 15000 trial order of Sputnik V," Roque said in a statement Wednesday.

"Vaccine Czar Carlito Galvez has taken steps to address these challenges and aims to receive the initial order of the Russian in the month of May instead," he added.

Roque explained the logistical challenges rose from "being no direct flights from Russia and that vaccine requires -20 temperature."

The first batch of Sputnik V vaccines from Russia was supposed to arrive last Sunday but its delivery was postponed reportedly due to a shortage in the global supply. The vaccine delivery was then moved to April 28. Authorities earlier announced the country was expected to 480,000 doses more of Sputnik V vaccines by the end of the month.

The Russian-made doses are among the sources of coronavirus vaccines secured by the Philippine government to reach its goal to inoculate 70 million Filipinos and attain herd immunity. The government plans to procure 140 million vaccine shots, setting aside P82.5 billion for the purchase orders.