NEW SUPPLIES. A total of 13 million doses of the Moderna vaccines will arrive by the third quarter, National Task Force against Covid-19 chief implementer Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. confirmed on Sunday (March 7, 2021). The World Health Organization said the US-manufactured jabs have shown an efficacy of approximately 92 percent against Covid-19. (Photo courtesy of Anadolu)

MANILA – Moderna, Inc. announced on Sunday it has signed a supply agreement with the Philippines for 13 million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine that will arrive by the third quarter of this year.

The Philippine government and private sector are also working out a deal for an additional 7 million doses.

“We thank the government and the private sector for their collaboration to bring the Covid-19 Vaccine Moderna to the Philippines,” Stéphane Bancel, chief executive officer of Moderna, said in a statement.

“We appreciate the confidence in Moderna and our mRNA platform demonstrated by the Government of the Philippines. We remain committed to making our vaccine available on every continent to help end this global pandemic.”

National Task Force Against Covid-19 chief implementer Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. also said in an interview on Sunday that the government is waiting for the final draft of the multilateral supply agreement with Moderna.

"Kasi dalawa po ang agreement natin with Moderna. 'Yung bilateral agreement na 13 million at saka yung 7 million (We are finalizing two agreements with Moderna firm. One is the bilateral agreement for the 13 million doses and the other one is 7 million doses) for the tripartite or multilateral agreement," he said.

Under the deal, the government is expecting the delivery of the Moderna vaccines by the third quarter of the year.

On Sunday night, 38,400 doses of the AstraZeneca jabs will arrive after the initial delivery of 487,200.

Sinovac, following a donation of 600,000 doses, will have 1.4 million more to be delivered on March 21. Of the total, 400,000 doses were donated by China.

"Sa ngayon po ang ating Emergency Use Authorization na nakabinbin pa lang po ngayon is yung sa Bharat atsaka po yung sa Gamaleya. 'Yung others, they are already submitting in, nagkakaroon ng tinatawag natin na parallel negotiation (So far, only the Bharat and Gamaleya companies have pending applications for EUA. The others are already submitting their applications, while the parallel negotiation is ongoing)," he said.

The World Health Organization (WHO) Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization has issued interim recommendations for use of the Moderna mRNA-1273 vaccine against Covid-19 for those aged 18 years and older.

The Moderna vaccine has been shown to have an efficacy of approximately 92 percent against Covid-19, starting from 14 days after the first dose, according to WHO.

“Based on the evidence so far, the new variants of SARS-CoV-2, including the B.1.1.7 and the 501Y.V2, do not alter the effectiveness of the Moderna mRNA vaccine,” the WHO posted on its website. (PNA)