President Rodrigo Duterte is covered by the compassionate special permit (CSP) earlier issued by the Food and Drug Administration to China’s Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccine, FDA director general Eric Domingo said Tuesday.
“Ito ‘yung [permit na] hiningi ng PSG dati bago pa dumating ang mga bakuna dito sa Pilipinas. Mayroon silang donation from China at hiningan ito ng special permit para nga maprotektahan ang Presidente at mukhang ‘yun din po ang ginamit sa ating pangulo kagabi,” Domingo said in an interview on Dobol B TV.
(This is the permit that the PSG had applied for when they received a donation from China. They asked for a special permit to protect the President and it seems that it is the same one that was used for the President’s vaccination last night.)
Aside from Duterte, Domingo said the wives and partners of Presidential Security Group members are also covered by the CSP.
So far, Domingo said there are two to three firms that have expressed their intent to apply for the emergency use authorization (EUA) of the coronavirus vaccine developed by China’s Sinopharm Group.
However, these firms have yet to submit requirements to the FDA, including proof that they are the official supplier and distributor of the Chinese-made COVID-19 vaccine in the country.
Duterte received the Sinopharm jab against COVID-19 on Monday, according to his former special aide, Senator Bong Go. It was administered by no less than Health Secretary Francisco Duque III.
In December last year, Duterte spilled the beans about members of the PSG who were inoculated with Sinopharm vaccine smuggled into the country. It was only in March 2021 that the government officially rolled out its vaccination program against COVID-19.
PSG Chief Jesus Durante III later confirmed the President’s information, saying PSG members inoculated themselves with Sinopharm.
It was only in February this year that the FDA granted compassionate use permit for 10,000 doses of Sinopharm vaccine for the use of PSG members.
A compassionate use permit, however, only allows for legal administration of COVID-19 vaccine in the Philippines and is not tantamount to the FDA endorsing the product’s safety and efficacy. —KBK, GMA News