Vigan City signs deal for over 100K doses of Covid-19 vaccine

VIGAN CITY — Mayor Carlo Medina of Vigan City announced in a statement released this evening that the city has sealed a deal that will ensure over 100,000 to 120,000 doses of Covid-19 vaccine for city residents.

  • Vigan City to get 100,000 to 120,000 doses of Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, enough to immunize all residents 18 years old and above
  • Unlike those of competitors, Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine can be stored in a normal fridge
  • AstraZeneca claims vaccine is safe and has 62% and 90% efficacy depending on the dose

According to Medina, the city government entered a multilateral agreement with AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals Philippines, Inc., the National Task Force against Covid-19, and the Department of Health for the advance purchase of AZD1222 or Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine.

AstraZeneca plc, a British-Swedish multinational pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical company with headquarters in Cambridge, England, developed its Covid-19 vaccine in cooperation with the Oxford University.

AstraZeneca’s vaccine is based on adenovirus-vectored technology, where a common cold virus that spreads only in chimpanzees was modified to carry a gene from the novel coronavirus’ spike protein, the portion of the virus that triggers an immune response. When introduced into the body, the vaccine teaches the immune system to manufacture antibodies to fight Covid-19 by imitating an infection but without the life-threatening side effects.

Unlike the vaccines developed by competitors which must be kept at extremely cold temperature, the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine can be stored in a normal fridge making it much easier to distribute in a tropical country like the Philippines.

According to a paper released by AstraZeneca, the vaccine shows efficacy of 90% when given as a half dose, followed by a full dose at least one month apart. When given in two full doses, a month apart, the vaccine shows 62% efficacy, higher than that of a flu vaccine (50% efficacy rate).

With Covid-19 vaccines, scientists do not know yet how long the protection will last pending a study of the impact of vaccination over time. It may be that people will need annual vaccinations like with the common flu.

The number of doses being procured by Vigan City is enough to give two full doses to all residents of the city.

“We ordered doses enough to vaccinate all residents of Vigan City, aged 18 years old and above,” Mayor Carlo Medina said in his statement.

“This early, we advise the public to educate themselves about COVID-19 vaccines. Let us use the advances in science to our advantage. Make sure that you get hold of appropriate and accurate information regarding vaccines. It will save lives,” he said.