The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) chief assured local government officials that the AztraZeneca vaccine rollout will continue, Negros Occidental Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson said Friday, April 16.
AstraZeneca has said the vaccine orders of the local governments are expected to arrive by July, Lacson added.
Negros Occidental and Bacolod City have made advance purchases for AstraZeneca vaccines.
FDA Director General Eric Domingo met with members of the Union of Local Authorities of the Philippines via Zoom, which was attended by Lacson, Friday morning.
The meeting was held after AstraZeneca was put on hold last week because of findings, not in the Philippines, of serious adverse effects such as blood clotting, Lacson said.
Domingo, at the ULAP meeting “made it clear that we can still go on with the use of AstraZeneca from ages 18 and above, because for awhile they were just recommending it for senior citizens”, Lacson said.
Domingo told the media earlier that they received unanimous recommendations from the World Health Organization and local experts that AstraZeneca’s benefits outweigh the known and potential risks.
The FDA did not find reports of blood clots from the vaccine in the Philippines, he said.
Meanwhile, Dr. Chris Sorongon, Bacolod Emergency Operations Center deputy for medical data and analysis, said the city is preparing for the rollout of 5,000 Sinovac vaccines good for 2,500 health care workers, which recently arrived.
They were informed that more vaccines will also arrive on April 22 and 29. Hopefully we can get more so we can already start the rollout for senior citizens and those with comorbidities, Sorongon said.*