MANILA, Philippines — Malacañang on Monday (March 1) confirmed that China’s Sinopharm has already filed for emergency use authorization (EUA) of its COVID-19 vaccine with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
This was confirmed by Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque at a press briefing.
“They have already filed with the fda an application for eua for sinopharm vaccine, nai-file na po,” he said during the kick off vaccination event in UP-PGH.
The Sinopharm vaccine has been controversial as it was the brand injected to members of the Presidential Security Group (PSG) last year despite lack of proper authorization from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
It is also the brand that is preferred by President Rodrigo Duterte himself.
However, FDA Director General Dr. Eric Domingo in Laging Handa public briefing on PTV earlier today said he has not seen an application as of Friday. He is also not sure if the application was filed online.
“As of last Friday po, wala pa naman akong nabalitaan na natanggap kami na EUA application from Sinopharm,” Domingo said.
“Hindi ko alam kung nag-apply sila online over the weekend pero wala pa pong sinasabi sa akin,” he added.
Should the EUA application be received, the FDA will have a long process of reviewing it similar to Sinovac;s CoronaVac vaccine.
Specifically, it will take more than 21 days or more likely from four to six weeks because Sinopharm has not received any EUA from much stringent regulatory authorities such as the United States, the United Kingdom and the World Health Organization.
At present, only three vaccines are FDA-approved for emergency use in the Philippines.
These are COVID-19 vaccines fro, Pfizer-BioNTech, AstraZeneca, and Sinovac. MNP (with reports from Rosalie Coz)