MANILA – The Department of Health (DOH) on Monday identified five hospitals as sites for clinical trials of a potential coronavirus 2019 (Covid-19) vaccine from China.

"Everything is under discussions for now. We're still negotiating. For primary information, there are already proposed sites where this is going to be implemented (for) this clinical trial," DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said in a virtual media forum.

The hospitals are the Philippine General Hospital, San Lazaro Hospital, Manila Doctors Hospital, Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center, and the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine.

"Itong Sinovac ngayon, nasa Phase 2, I think they have already started Phase 3 and mayroon ng ganito na isinasagawa ang (Sinovac is now in Phase 2, I think they have already started Phase 3 and there's already testing in) Brazil," Vergeire said.

She added Sinovac Biotech Ltd. — the vaccine's manufacturer — is processing applications for Phase 3 clinical studies.

"So, antayin lang natin 'yung (So, let us just wait for) further information because negotiations are still ongoing although they have already submitted and the CDA (confidential disclosure agreement) is already final and is being studied by our vaccine experts," Vergeire said.

As of 4 p.m. Monday, the DOH reported 220,819 Covid-19 cases, 157,562 recoveries, and 3,558 deaths. (PNA