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Private sector eyes Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines for children

The Philippine business sector is looking to procure additional COVID-19 vaccines for the children of their employees, according to Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Jose Ma. “Joey” Concepcion III.

Concepcion said the private sector is looking at procuring Pfizer vaccines via a tripartite agreement, to aid the government in its vaccination rollout.

“The private sector would like to see how we can bring Pfizer, so that eventually we can use this for our children,” he said in an interview on ANC’s “Headstart” on Tuesday.

“We’d like to participate, if they will allow a tripartite agreement so that we can also help the children of our employees,” he added.

Concepcion earlier estimated the cost to vaccinate a person at P300 to P400, including logistics and storage at P30 per dose or P60 for two doses. This does not include the procurement of the vaccines.

READ: How the private sector is stepping up in the Philippines’ vaccination drive against COVID-19

Vaccine Czar Carlito Galvez Jr. on Sunday said the vaccination of children could start by September or October, depending on the supply of the vaccines.

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III on Monday morning expressed support for the vaccination of minors provided that there are enough supplies.

However, during the President's Talk to the People Monday evening,  Duque said further studies are needed before COVID-19 vaccine will be administered to children.

US regulators in May authorized the Pfizer vaccine for use in children as young as 12. The Philippines has yet to release similar guidelines for the vaccination of children.

The Philippines has so far received some 38.602 million vaccines as of August 8, 2021, of which 24.479 million have already been administered. Some 11.391 million have already received two doses, while 13.087 million have only received their first dose.

According to Concepcion, a tripartite agreement is needed as vaccine manufacturers require an indemnification clause as most of them are still under emergency use authorization (EUA).

“The reason why it’s very important is the pharmaceutical authorities will have a guarantee, so they require an indemnification. The private sector cannot provide the indemnification,” he explained.—AOL, GMA News