Russian gov’t shows interest in manufacturing COVID-19 vaccine in PH
Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez has stated that the Russian government has shown interest to manufacture Corona Virus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccine in the Philippines after talking with Russian Ambassador to the Philippines Igor Khovaev.
This will greatly help the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) since the country does not have the capacity to manufacture its own vaccine.
According to Philippine Council for Health Research and Development Executive Director Dr. Jaime Montoya, the government currently aims to have a local pharmaceutical company that can establish the fill and finish for the vaccine. However, it will take around 5 years before it is finished.
The Department of Health (DOH) is also receptive in opening a production and distribution hub for Sputnik V vaccine in the country provided that it will undergo the proper regulatory process.
“This will provide us with that advantage hindi lang dito sa pandemyang ito, but in the coming years na magkakaroon po tayo uli ng mga pangangailangan na ganito (This will provide us with that advantage not only in this pandemic, but in the coming years that we might need this again),” DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire pointed out.
In relation with the clinical trial of Sputnik V, USec. Vergeire explained that “in a regulatory process, para makapag-clinical trial ang isang manufacturer sa ating bansa, kailangan mayroon silang contract research organization dito sa Pilipinas para mag-manage ng clinical trial kasama nila. So ngayon, tinutulungan na natin ang Gamaleya Institute so that they can find an appropriate contract research organization dito sa atin, which is reputable (In a regulatory process, for a manufacturer to conduct its clinical trial in the country, it must have a contract research organization in the Philippines to manage the clinical trial with them. So now, we are helping Gamaleya Institute so that they can find an appropriate local contract research organization which is reputable. ”
Aside from Gamaleya Institute, the Jannsen Pharmaceuticals Companies of Johnson & Johnson and Sinovac have also submitted their application for Phase 3 clinical trials. The government is expecting to start at least one clinical trial in the country by November.
Report from Mark Fetalco / ptvnews.ph