P15.6 billion worth of Covid-19 vaccines wasted: DOH

By Ma. Teresa Montemayor

November 21, 2022, 4:57 pm

<p><em>(PNA file photo)</em></p>

(PNA file photo)

MANILA — More than 31 million shots or PHP15.6 billion worth of coronavirus disease (Covid-19) vaccines were wasted so far, a health official said Monday.

In a radio interview, Department of Health (DOH) officer-in-charge Maria Rosario Vergeire said 24 million doses were wasted because of short shelf life while the remaining 7 million were discarded due to temperature excursion or opened but unused.

"This 31 million po 'pag tiningnan po natin 'yung kabuuan, almost 70 percent po dito ay 'yun pong na-procure ng private sector at saka ng (When we look at the totality of this 31 million, almost 70 percent here, almost 70 percent of this were procured by the private sector and the) local governments," Vergeire said.

She explained the early batches of Covid-19 jabs only have a shelf life of six months from their manufacturing date.

Earlier, the DOH disclosed that vaccine hesitancy and complacency among Filipinos are two of the factors that led to low booster shot coverage nationwide.

As of Nov. 20, a total of 73,707,875 Filipinos have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19, and 20,866,539 have received their booster dose. (PNA)