Cebu City begins talks with 2 vaccine makers

·2 min read

THE Cebu City Government is negotiating with AstraZeneca and Moderna for the procurement of vaccines against coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).

At the same time, Mayor Edgardo Labella said the Cebu City Vaccine Advisory Board is finalizing its vaccination plan, which will identify the cold chain facilities and the vaccination centers. It will also contain a priority list of recipients.

In a press conference on Wednesday, Jan. 27, 2021, Labella said the vaccines that the City Government will purchase will be on top of the vaccines allocated by the national government for Cebu City.

“Cebu City is ready (for the vaccination program),” Labella said.

He said vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. has asked him for a list of individuals who will receive the vaccine first.

In a previous report, Labella said medical frontliners will be the first to get vaccinated, followed by the police and military forces, senior citizens, and those considered as “poorest of the poor.”

During the Cebu City Council’s regular session Wednesday, Councilor Dave Tumulak urged the executive department to purchase cold storage facilities and portable containers capable of storing vaccines.

In his privilege speech, Tumulak said Zuellig Pharma’s cold storage facility at the North Reclamation Area is capable of storing the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, which needs to be kept at -80 to -60 degrees Celsius to remain stable.

However, Zuellig might not be able to accommodate all the vaccines that will be delivered to Cebu City, Tumulak added.

He also urged the barangays to start looking for areas that can serve as vaccination centers subject to the guidelines set by the Department of Health (DOH).

Among the potential vaccination centers are the University of San Jose - Recoletos (USJ-R) Basak campus and ACE Medical Center. Tumulak asked that these institutions lend a portion of their properties to serve as inoculation sites.

Tumulak further urged the executive department to allocate funds for the hospitalization of those who might suffer from allergic reactions to the vaccine.

These funds will be used to augment the PhilHealth benefits and City Hospitalization Assistance and Medicines Program (Champ). (JJL)