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Sinovac to conduct COVID-19 vaccine clinical trial on older Pinoys

Chinese pharmaceutical firm Sinovac Biotech will conduct a clinical trial for its COVID-19 vaccine on Filipinos 60-years-old and older.

According to Lei Alviz’s report on “24 Oras Weekend” on Sunday, the Philippine Food and Drug Administration found that the Sinovac vaccine had an efficacy rate of 65% to 91% for healthy individuals aged 18 to 59 years old.

However, the FDA did not recommend the Sinovac jab for senior citizens.

“Unfortunately, most of the vaccines that are currently issued an EUA have little data as far as the elderly are concerned, lalo na ‘yong sa young people. So we really have to generate the evidence to be able to show its efficacy in this particular age groups,” Department of Science and Technology–Philippine Council for Health Research Development Executive Director Jaime Montoya said.

Montoya said Sinovac had conducted clinical trials on the elderly in other countries.

“Once the data is available and they’ve analyzed it already, they submit it to FDA and the FDA can update its recommendations,” he said.

In early February, Sinovac said late-stage trial data of its COVID-19 vaccine from Brazil and Turkey showed it prevented hospitalization and death in COVID-19 patients, but had a much lower efficacy rate in blocking infections.

The 12,396-person trial found the CoronaVac vaccine was 100% effective in preventing COVID-19 sufferers from being hospitalized or dying and 83.7% effective in avoiding cases that required any medical treatment, but only 50.65% effective at keeping people from getting infected, according to a statement. —  Ma. Angelica Garcia/DVM, GMA News