Baguio eyes options on purchased vaccines

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The city is studying the feasible options on how to deal with a pharmaceutical company for the proper disposition of the vaccines that were earlier purchased by the local government that was supposed to be inoculated to the qualified population during the roll out of the government’s mass vaccination program.

Mayor Benjamin B. Magalong requested the City Legal Office to study the agreement between the local government and the manufacturer of the purchased AstraZeneca vaccine to ensure that the city will be taking the proper steps in dealing with the current situation to avoid unnecessary legal issues that will transpire in case it will decide to take either of the available options.

Earlier, the city purchased from the manufacturer of AstraZeneca more than 380,000 doses of the said vaccine which was supposed to be inoculated to the qualified population for the immediate attainment of herd immunity that will pave the way for the gradual and safe revival of the local economy.

City Budget OFFICER Leticia O. Clemente disclosed that the local finance committee already wrote the vaccine manufacturer proposing the possible options that will be undertaken by both parties to prevent the possible over supply of the vaccines in the city because the local government was able to access more than enough vaccines from the ones that were purchased by the national government and donations from the COVAX facility.

She explained that the city inquired from the vaccine manufacturer on the possibility of pre-terminating the contract for the purchase of the vaccines or delay the delivery of the remaining balance of the ordered vaccines as the city already has more than enough vaccines that will be inoculated to the remaining adult population.

Based on the data from the City Health Services Office (CHSO), 90 percent of the more than 281,000 eligible population had already received their first dose of the available vaccines while around 72 percent are already fully vaccinated.

The local chief executive claimed that the city can opt for the delay in the delivery of the remaining balance of the ordered vaccines once the proposed pre-termination contract will not be feasible and that the same could be given to the local governments that will be in need of the vaccines provided that the amount that was used will be reimbursed to the city by the receiving local governments.

According to him, the delay in the delivery of the ordered vaccines is likely possible because the same is done in tranches that is why the city will be able to assess and evaluate the status of the ongoing inoculation program and pursue the implementation of alternate measures that will guarantee additional supply of vaccines for interested local governments wanting to speed up their respective vaccination of their qualified adult population.

Aside from speeding up the vaccination of the remaining unvaccinated adult population, the city also opened the inoculation of the patriotic population or those children aged 12 to 17 based on the guidelines that had been crafted by the inter-agency task force for the management of emerging infectious diseases to help increase the number of vaccinated residents. By Dexter A. See

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